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Full text of "A handbook of the sign language of the deaf : prepared especially for ministers, Sunday school workers, theological students and friends of the deaf"

FROM MY, BOOKS 





A 

Handbook of the Sign Language 
of the Deaf 



Prepared Especially for 

Ministers, Sunday School IDorkers 

Theological Students and 

Friends of the Deaf 

BU 

J. ID. Hlichaels, B. Ped. 
Missionary to the Deaf 

Home Mission Board 

Southern Baptist Conuention 

Atlanta, Qa. 



Published btj 

Home Mission Board Southern Baptist Convention 

Atlanta, Ga. 



Foole & Davies Co., Printers 
1923 



QWje preparation of 

tfjig book fja« been a la= 

bor of lobe anb itsf bebieation 

to tfje &ome Jttission Poarb ta 

a tofeen of appreciation for tofjat tfje 

Jloarb ifi boing for tfje beat mute* 

of our lanb in fjelping; tfje beaf 

to fjear anb tfje bumu to 

sfpeab tfje stor? of 

tfje Cross;. 



COPYRIGHT APPLIED FOR. 



Contents 



Page 

Preface 5 

Scriptural Mention of the Deaf 6 

The Universality of the Sign Language 6 

Naturalness of the Signs 7 

The Sign Language Used in the United States 7 

New Methods of Teaching the Deaf 8 

Thanks Due Dr. B. D. Gray, Corresponding Secretary of 

Home Mission Board 10 

Thanks Due Dr. J. F. Love, Corresponding Secretary of 
Foreign Mission Board 11 

Some Important Instructions for the Student 13 

Single-Hand Alphabet .' 17 

Vocabulary 19 

List of Numbers 142 

Double-Hand Alphabet 144 

Lord 's Prayer in Signs 145 

ILLUSTRATIONS. 

The Three Immortals of the Deaf * . . 7 

Dr. B. D. Gray, Cor. Secy. Home Mission Board 10 

Dr. J. F. Love, Cor. Secy. Foreign Mission Board 11 

L. B. Dickerson 12 

Single-Hand Alphabet 17 

J. W. Michaels 18 

Conversation Between Deaf Friends 32 

De 1 'Epee Monument 67 

The Gallaudet Memorial Statue 84 

A Few of the American Signs 104 

Live Picture Illustrations Throughout the Book. 



Introduction 

This little Handbook op the Sign Lan- 
guage is prepared especially as a lielp for 
Ministers of the Gospel and Sunday-school 
teachers who may come in contact with deaf 
persons whom they may wish to interest in 
religious matters. It will also be a worthy 
study for Theological students, who con- 
template taking up missionary work at 
home and abroad. Heathens can more readi- 
ly understand motions than the speech of 
strangers. 

The book will fall into the hands of in- 
telligent people, and it is our belief that 
when one has learned to follow the delinea- 
tions of a few words herein, even enough as 
to say, "I am glad to see you," the deaf 
friend will be ever ready to help the learner 
in his efforts to learn more. 

It is claimed by some of the hearing in 
the profession of teaching the deaf that it is 
impossible for a new comer to learn and re- 
tain the sign-language, unless he is in con- 
stant association with deaf persons. How- 
ever, this may be we have an instance where 
such does not hold good with intelligent per- 
sons such as we have in our ministers and 
other religious workers. Recently we were 
commenting on this claim with a prominent 
member of our Home Mission Board when 
he surprised us by going over the Double- 
Hand Alphabet (the English) as easily as 
if he had been in constant practice for years, 
but he said he had learned them when he 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

was a young man some forty years ago and 
that it had been years since he had had oc- 
casion to use them. Disuse will cause rust, 
it is true, but polishing up will bring things 
back to normalcy. 



SCRIPTURAL MENTION OF THE 
DEAF. 

God created the deaf [Exodus 4 :11] and 
He also created for them a language by 
which they might hear through the eye. 
[Isaiah 42 :18 and 43 :8] and in Leviticus 19 : 
14, He admonishes us that we should not 
neglect the deaf and again in Isaiah 29:18 
we find that the deaf will hear The Wokd. 
Then came the Lord Jesus Christ and "un- 
stopped the ears and untied the tongue of 
the deaf." Mark 7:34-35. Jesus, here used 
the sign language. Since Christ's time we 
hear of no more miraculous opening of the 
ear, or the untying of the tongue, but the 
mind has been and is continually being en- 
lightened and chiefly by means of the sign- 
language and so the deaf now hear (see) 
the Woed and the Gospel preached. 



THE UNIVERSALITY OF THE SIGN- 
LANGUAGE. 

The sign-language is universally used by 
the deaf people, and though all nations do 
not use the same mode of signs, one having 
a knowledge of the signs herein delineated 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

will experience little, if any difficulty in un- 
derstanding other modes, and of being un- 
derstood by those who use a different mode. 

NATURALNESS OF THE SIGNS. 

Most signs are natural. They are made 
up by imitating the appearance and the ac- 
tion of persons, animals and things. An in- 
telligent person after a brief association 
with a deaf friend will soon observe the 
naturalness of the language and will be able 
to invent motions to express himself intel- 
ligibly. Very often a whole phrase, clause 
or sentence is expressed by a single move- 
ment of the hand and the head. 

Samples of some of these will be given 
herein. 



THE SIGNS USED IN THE 
UNITED STATES. 
The sign-language used by the deaf in the 
United States was brought to them by Dr. 
Thomas Hopkins G-allaudet who became in- 
terested in a little deaf girl, Alice Cogs- 




The Theee Immoetals Among The Deaf. 

1. De l'Epee 

2. Gallaudet 3. Clerc 

7 



HANDBOOK OF THE- SIGN LANGUAGE 



well, in New England. He felt a call from 
the Lord to enlighten this little girl as well 
as many more deaf persons. He went to 
England in quest of methods of teaching 
the deaf. At that time there was a monop- 
oly on the art of teaching the deaf in Eng- 
land and not being willing to comply with 
the English conditions Dr. Gallaudet went 
over to Paris, France. Here he met the 
Abbe Sicard, who was in charge of the 
School for the Deaf, founded in 1755 by 
the Abbe De L'Epee, by whom it is said the 
signs used in France were invented. After 
a brief stay in Paris, Dr. G-allaudet return- 
ed to New England accompanied by an 
educated deaf young man, Laurent Clerc, 
and in 1817, founded a school for the deaf 
in Hartford, Connecticut. From this be- 
ginning schools for the deaf have been es- 
tablished in all the states in the United 
States. Many of the large cities have also 
started what are called Day-Schools for the 
deaf. At present there are approximately 
one hundred schools for the deaf in the 
United States. 



NEW METHODS OF TEACHING 
THE DEAF. 

During the last half century New Meth- 
ods have been introduced in teaching the 
deaf, especially the Puke Oeal and the Lip 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

Reading method, which is but another and 
more difficult sign-language expressed by 
the vocal organs and the movements of the 
lips. This method requires a great deal of 
patience and time to learn and in the end 
proves of little, if any benefit to the learn- 
ers. They say that their peculiar utterances 
can not be understood by the hearing peo- 
ple, and that it is difficult for them (the 
deaf) to understand the rapid movements of 
the lips of the hearing people and they be- 
come so much discouraged that they return 
to the sign-language and the pencil and pad 
to be understood. 

Then, the orally taught deaf people, omit- 
ting these who became partly deaf from 
disease, are usually behind in educational 
matters, compared with those who were 
educated by the Combined System, i. e. 
Where signs, and the method best adapted 
to the individual are used. Not one out of 
a hundred, and we might say, out of a thou- 
sand of the orally taught deaf persons can 
read the sermons or addresses delivered 
from the rapidly moving lips from the pul- 
pit or the platform. Therefore, the sign- 
language and the manual alphabet are used 
in the chapels for all religious sermons and 
lectures for the deaf. Parents of deaf chil- 
dren, however, usually prefer that their 
children be taught by the oral method. 



HANDBOOK OP THE SIGN LANGUAGE 



THANKS DUE DR. B. D. GRAY. 

The thanks of the 
deaf people the world 
over are due Dr. B. D. 
Gray, corresponding 
secretary of the Home 
Mission Board of the 
Southern Baptist Con- 
vention, because of his 
great interest in the 
mission for the deaf, 
and the issuing of this 
little Handbook of the 
Sign-Language which 
will be placed with 
religious workers that they may be able to 
help the deaf spiritually and in whatever 
way they can for their betterment. "With- 
out his earnest inquiry as to the condition of 
the deaf people in every phase of life, and 
his earnest efforts to help them from a 
religious standpoint through their mission- 
ary, there would be no Baptist Missionary 
for the Deaf. Verily he takes his place as 
one of the benefactors of the deaf in the 
world. 




DR. B. D. GRAY. 



10 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 




THANKS DUE TO DR. J. F. LOVE. 

When Dr. J. E. Love 
was corresponding sec- 
retary of the Arkan- 
sas Baptist State Con- 
vention, some twenty 
years ago, he gracious- 
ly espoused the course 
of a missionary to the 
deaf in the State of 
Arkansas and your 
present missionary for 
the deaf was called to 
take up the work in 
that State alone. Later 
on he suggested that the mission be extend- 
ed to all the Southern States. This led on 
to the Home Mission Board's, through Dr. 
B. D. Gray's efforts, creating the present 
position of missionary to the deaf. Dr. 
Love, now Corresponding Secretary of the 
Foreign Mission Board, still takes interest 
in the deaf in foreign lands. 

Great thanks are due him, and he will be 
reverenced by all deaf people who may 
know of these facts. 

All hail to these two benefactors of the 
deaf — Dr. B. D. Gray and Dr. J. F. Love. 



DK. J. F. LOVE. 



Our thanks are tendered to Mr. Edward 
I. Holycross, of Columbus, Ohio, and to Mr. 
L. J. Bacheberle, of Cincinnati, Ohio, for 
the loan of several cuts used herein. 



11 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

NOTE. 

It is not claimed that this book contains 
all the words that could be put in signs, nor 
is it claimed that the delineations herein are 
exactly like other deaf persons would de- 
scribe them but they are depicted as the 
author uses them and he claims to be in the 
third generation from Gallaudet and Clerc, 
who introduced the language into the United 
States. Very few people use the same voice 
in talking, and so for signs. 




L. B. DICKERSON 

Our thanks are due Mr. L. B. Dickerson, deaf linotypist, 

of Atlanta, Ga., for the excellent work herein. 



12 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

Some Instructions for the 
Student 

1. Important — The student is advised to 
learn the motions as delineated herein slow- 
ly and carefully in the beginning put on 
speed later. 

2. The Manual or One-Hand Alphabet, a 
sketch being herein given, should be thor- 
oughly mastered before one begins to learn 
the signs. To learn the alphabet in a very 
short time, follow this plan : 

Make the letter "a" with the fingers, look 
closely at it. Relax your fingers and make 
the letter again, repeat two or three times, 
then add the letter "b," using the same pre- 
caution, add "c." Now close your eyes and 
make "a, b, c." If you feel satisfied you 
have them fixed in your mind, go on with 
"d, e, f," using the same precaution as in 
"a, b, c." Then repeat with your eyes 
closed — "a, b, c, d, e, f." Then add three 
more letters, repeat the whole and so on un- 
til you finish the list. In this way many 
have learned how to make the letters in less 
than one hour's time. 

Having learned the letters you should 
practice in spelling the following words, 
wherein all the alphabet is contained: 

Adz, fan, map, cow, box, jar, sky, hat, 
quill, glove. 

3. The words delineated in the vocab- 
ulary are as near as possible, one sylable 
words that have signs. 

13 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

4. Remember that Synonyms take the 
same sign, for instance: "want," " desire" 
and "wish" are all indicated by the sign for 
"want." 

5. The signs for the Parts of Speech are 
not necessarily used in conversation or lec- 
turing with signs. But when you find it 
necessary, use the following motions : 

Article — Indefinite — A or An — Move the 
hand with the index finger only sticking up, 
in a round about way in front of you. 

Article — Definite — The — Shake the index 
finger toward the subject or object. 

Noun — Draw the palm of the right hand 
over the back of the left hand, then reverse, 
and draw the palm of the left hand over the 
back of the right hand. 

The cases of nouns are denoted as follows : 

Nominative — Take hold of the fingers of 
the left hand with the index finger and 
thumb of the right hand and move both 
hands simultaneously outward, as if the 
right hand is leading the left hand along. 

Possessive — Push the palm of one hand 
toward the possessor or object, or if to say: 
"my" or "mine" move the palm against 
the breast. 

Objective — Move one hand forward and 
as you do so turn the palm of the hand up- 
ward. 

Degree — The Comparative — Put the fin- 
gers of one hand with the thumb sticking 
up, to the lips and move the hand upward to 
the level of your head. 

14, 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

Superlative — Same as comparative, but 
move the hand somewhat above the level of 
the head. 

Adveeb — Place the palm of the right hand 
on the back of the left hand and then move 
the right hand palm up to and against the 
left shoulder. 

Verb — Transitive — Hold the hands so 
that the palms will face the sides of the 
cheeks, and move both hands forward sim- 
ultaneously as far as convenient. 

Verb — Intransitive or Passive — Hold the 
hands as in transitive verb and let them 
drop backward over your shoulders." 

Pronoun — Pass the thumb of one hand 
clear under the palm of the other hand, 
which means substitute. 

Preposition — Strike the thumb of one 
hand between the divided index and middle 
fingers of the other hand. 

Conjunction — Make a link with the in- 
dex fingers and thumbs of both hands. 

Tense — Only the present-tense is used in 
the vocabulary. 

Present Tense — Hold both hands with 
the palms turned up before you raise them 
up a little and let them drop back to a 
stationary position. 

Future Tense — Hold either hand with 
the palm near the side and move it straight 
forward as far as convenient. 

Past Tense — Throw either hand back- 
ward over your shoulder. 

15 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

The Peesent - Perfect — Hold the left 
hand in front of you with the palm toward 
you. Make a quick motion downward and 
near the tips of the fingers of the left hand 
with the right hand, then repeat the present 
tense motion. 

Future Perfect Tense — Make the future 
tense motion and then make the quick 
downward motion as in Present Perfect 
Tense. 

Past Perfect Tense — Make the quick 
downward motion as in Present-Perfect 
Tense, and add the Past Tense motion. 

Number — Singular — Hold up the index 
finger only. 

Plural — Close the fingers of one or both 
hands in the palms and relax them two or 
three times. 

Punctuation Marks are made in the air 
using the index finger as you would a pencil 
in making them on paper. 



16 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 









a b c D E /■ F 








H ~ J K L 



M- M O P . Q 








^ 




IT s T u v w 






SINGLE-HAND ALPHABET USED IN FRANCE 
AND AMERICA 



17 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGH LANGUAGE 




J. W. MICHAELS, 
Missionary to the Deaf. 



Fil O 



~>3 .tm ft «f 




Learn the manual alphabet and be able to 

converse with your deaf friends, is the 

appeal of the deaf everywhere. 



\%$ 



B - * *»L ft . * "* 



I^JI 






18 



ATTENTION: 

For practice, see the Lord's Prayer Pose 
Illustrations, pages 145 to 162. 



handbook: op the sign language 



Vocabulary 



The Delineations of the words are direct- 
ed by Poses, the most important of which is 
pose No. 1. Follow the poses slowly and 
put on speed gradually. 

"Practice makes perfect." Follow the 
maxim. 

A 
A oe An — 

1. Hold the index finger in front of you. 

2. Move the finger in a round about way. 

About— 

1. Close the fingers around the thumb of 
the left hand. 

2. Move the index finger of the right hand 
around the left hand two or three times. 

Above — 

1. Hold your left hand before you with 
the back of the hand turned up. 

2. Close the fingers of the right hand in 
the palm of the hand. 

3. Have the thumb sticking up. 

4. Move the right hand around over the 
left hand in a circular manner. 

Abraham — 

1. Hold your right hand up about the 
level of your head. 

2. Close the fingers and thumb as if 
clinching a knife. 

3. Bring the hand down and outward, as 
if to stab some one. 

4. Quickly seize the right forearm near 
the wrist with the left hand to prevent 
the stabbing. 

19 



handbook of the sign language 

Ache — 

1. Extend both index fingers. 

2. Close the other fingers and thumbs in 
the palms of the hands. 

3. Hold the hands over the place that 
aches. 

4. Jab the index fingers toward each other 
two or three times. 

Acoen — 

1. Put the index finger point to the first 
joint of the thumb. 

2. Put the tip of the thumb to your teeth. 

3. Act as if biting. 

(Note same sign for all nuts, spell 
variety). 

Aceoss — 

1. Hold your left hand with the palm 
turned down. 

2. Pass the right hand across and over the 
left hand. 

Active — 

1. Have the palms of both hands on your 
sides near the waist. 

2. Assume a lively attitude. 

3. Move the hands upward along your 
sides. 

4. Vigorously wiggle your fingers as you 
move the hands upward. 

Adam — 

1. Hold the closed fist of the right hand 
in front of you. 

2. Move the hand in a sudden jerking way 
above the level of your head — Disobey 
or Disobedient. 

3. Add the sign for Man. 

20 



handbook of the sign language 

Adore — 

1. See admire and worship. 

Admire — 

1. Put the palms of the hands to the 
breast one above the other. 

2. Move the hands outward. 

3. Close the fingers around the thumbs. 

4. Have a pleasant and admiring look. 

Admit — 

1. Bow the head in an affirmative manner. 

Afraid — 

1. Hold both hands out before you with 
the palms turned down. 

2. Draw the hands back toward you in a 
trembling manner. 

3. Draw up the shoulders a little. 

4. Have a frightened look. 
Africa — 

1. Draw the index finger along your eye 
brown — black. 

2. Press your middle finger against the 
nose — negro. 

3. Close the fingers of the right hand with 
the thumb on the index finger. 

4. Move the right hand in a circle over the 
back of the left hand. 

After — 

1. Hold your left hand near your right 
side, palm toward you. 

2. Put the fingers of the right hand on the 
back of the left hand. 

3. Force the left hand back a little with 
the right hand fingers. 

4. Move the right hand out forward in a 
straight forward way. 

21 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

Aetee — (to follow). 

1. Hold the left hand with the • thumb 
sticking up in front of you. 

2. Put your right hand with the thumb 
sticking up right back of the left hand. 

3. Move the left hand in a zigzaz way for- 
ward. 

4. Let the right hand follow the left hand. 
Again — 

1. Hold the left hand with the palm turn- 
ed up. 

2. Strike in the palm of the left hand with 
the tips of the right hand fingers. 

Against — 

1. Hold the left hand with the palm fac- 
ing you and the fingers turned up. 

2. Strike in the left palm with the tips of 
the right hand fingers. 

Against — (to lean against.) 

1. Put the head against the palm of one 
hand. 

2. Lean the elbow of the arm against some 
thing. Or 

1. Press the fingers of the right hand 
against the left forearm. 
Ago — 

1. Throw the right or the left hand back- 
ward over your shoulder. 
(a little while ago). 

1. Touch the tip of the index finger with 
the tip of the thumb — (little). 

2. Throw the hand backward over the 
shoulder. 

Alas — 

1. Throw up your hands with the palms 
facing outward. 

22 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

2. Bring the hands together and wring 
them. 

3. Have a distressed countenance. 

All — 

1. Let your index fingers and thumbs 
touch each other full length in front of 
you. 

2. Hold the hands up to the level of your 
eyes. 

3. Move the hands in a circular movement 
until the little fingers touch each other. 
(Note. — Same sign for whole or en- 
tire). 

Almost — 

1. Hold the left hand with the palm turn- 
ed in before you and a little out from 
the breast. 

2. Pass the right palm upward along the 
back of the left hand, barely touching 
the left hand. 

Along — 

1. Have the index finger pointing down- 
ward. 

2. Move the finger forward in a zigzag 
manner. 

Am — (to-oe). 

1. Touch the breast with either index fin- 
ger. 

2. Hold both hands with palms up in front 
of you. 

(Note. — Some would put the index fin- 
ger across the lips and move the finger 
outward). 

23 



handbook of the sign language 

Ameeica — 

1. Close the fingers in the right palm, with 
the thumb resting on the index finger. 

2. Move the hand in a broad circular 
manner before you. 

Amidst — 

1. Hold the left hand with the palm turn- 
ed up in front of you. 

2. Move the right hand fingers in a circle 
above the left palm. 

3. Let the tips of the right fingers strike 
in the middle of the left palm. 

Among — 

1. Hold the left hand before you with the 
fingers parted and turned upward. 

2. Pass the right index finger among the 
left hand fingers in an entwining man- 
ner. 

And — 

1. Draw the right hand from your left 
and close the fingers around the 
thumbs. 

Anothee — 

1. Close the fingers of the right hand in 
the palm. 

2. Let the thumb of the hand stick up. 

3. Hold the hand direct in front of you. 

4. Move the hand to the right a foot or 
two in a quick movement. 

Ape — 
1. See monkey. 

Apple — 
1. Rub the fist of either hand on your 
cheek (for color.) 

24 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

2. Act as if biting pieces off of the fist, as 
in eating an apple. 

Arm — 

1. Pass the palm of either hand from the 
shoulder down to the wrist of the other 
arm. 

Arms — 
1. See gun. 

Around — 

1. Hold the left fist in front of you. 

2. Move the index finger of the right hand 
around it. 

Around — (indicating place). 

1. Point the index finger around the cor- 
ner or place. 

Arrive — 

1. Drop the back of the right hand in the 

palm of the left hand. 
2.' Quickly move both hands out forward 

in a bouncing manner. 

As— 

1. Extend both index fingers out parallel 
before you. 

2. Move both hands simultaneously to the 
right then to the left. Or 

Strike the index fingers together two 
times. 

Asia — 

1. Put the index fingers to the temples 
and push the skin up. 

2. Move the letter "a" in a circle before 
you in a round about way. 

25 



HANDBOOK OP THE SIGN LANGUAGE 




Ask — 

1. Put the finger tips of 
both hands together as 
if to prayer. 

2. Move the hands out be- 
fore you and draw them 
toward you. 

Assist — 

1. Put jour right palm under your left 
forearm or hand. 

2. Lift the left forearm or hand upward. 

At — 

1. Hold your left hand with the back 
turned to your face. 

2. Touch against it with the fingers of the 
right hand. Or 

1. Move both hands with palms turned 
down simultaneously to one side. 

Attack — 

1. Hold the palm of the left hand in front 
of you. 

2. Strike against the left palm with the 
fist or tips of your right hand fingers. 

AlTNT — 

1. Close the right hand fingers in the 
palm. 

2. Rest the thumb on the index finger. 

3. Move the hand up and down near the 
right temple. 

Automobile — 

1. Just make motion of turning the steer- 
ing wheel of an automobile. 

26 



handbook of the sign language 

Awful — 

1. Cluster the fingers of both hands 
around the thumbs. 

2. Put the hands to the lower part of the 
cheeks. 

3. Move the hands upward along the 
cheeks to the temples, meanwhile relax 
the fingers from the thumbs. 

4. Have a frowning or frightened look. 

Awkward — 

1. Make an ugly face. 

2. Pass the hooked index fingers up and 
down your cheeks one after the other. 

3. Shrug your shoulders. 

4. Walk in a limping and crooked way. 



Baby — 




B 

1. Put your right hand on 
your left forearm. 

2. Move the forearm and 
hand up and down as 
you do a baby. 



Bad— 



Put the fingers of one 
hand to the mouth. 
Throw the hand down- 
ward in a vehement man- 
ner in front of you and as 
you do so turn the palm 
downward. 

27 




HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

Ball — (to dance). 

1. Move the index and middle fingers of 
the tight hand around in the palm of 
your left hand, wiggle the fingers as 
you do so. 

2. Go through motion of waltzing. 
Or 

Ball — (baseball). 

1. Make motion of striking with a base- 
ball bat. 

Ball — 

1. Hold your left fist in front of you. 

2. Pass the right palm over it. 

3. Make motion of throwing up and catch- 
ing a ball. 

Baptize — 

1. Hold the palms facing each other in 
front of you. 

2. Move the hands downward toward the 
left. 

Baen — 

1. Make a peak by placing the tips of the 
fingers of both hands together held up 
in front of you. 

2. Move the hands apart slantingly a lit- 
tle, then downward perpendicular and 
parallel to each other. 

3. Hold the back of one hand with fingers 
parted and pointing upward, near your 
mouth. 

4. Pass the back of the hand up and down 
before the mouth and chew. 

(The motions used would indicate 
house and eating hay). 

28 



handbook of the sign language 

Bath — 

1. Make the sign for "water." (See 
water). 

2. Rub from the breast down to your waist 
with the palms of both hands. 

Be— 

1. Hook the right index finger and move 
it to the left before you. See am. 

Beat — (in a contest). 

1. Close the fingers of both hands in the 
palms. 

2. Let the thumbs stick up. 

3. Hold the left hand in front of you. 

4. Hold the right hand a little behind the 
left hand. 

5. Push the left hand thumb over with the 
right hand thumb. 

Beat — (Punish) . 

1. Strike two times with the right fist in 
the palm of the left hand. Or 

Beat — 

1. Imagine you hold some one or thing by 
the collar with the left hand, and a 
whip or stick in your right hand. 

2. Strike under the left hand with the 
imaginary whip or stick. 

Beautiful, — 
1. See pretty. 

Because: — 

1. Put the fingers of the right hand to the 
forehead. 

2. Move the hand up above the head. 

3. Close the fingers in the palm of the 
hand. 

29 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 



Befoke — (before a certain time). 

1. Hold the left hand with the back of the 
hand facing you. 

2. Put the back of the right hand against 
the back of the left hand. 

3. Draw the right hand toward you and 
move the left hand forward from you. 

Before — (to confront). 

1. Hold the left hand palm facing you. 

2. Suddenly place the right hand palm be- 
fore the left hand palm. 

Beg — 

1. Hold your left forearm in front of you 
with the palm of the hand turned down- 
ward. 

2. Put your right hand under the left 
forearm near the wrist. 

3. Move the hands in this position in a 
round about way. 

4. Meanwhile draw in and extend the fin- 
gers of the right hand. 

Behave — 

1. Put your, index finger across your lips 
— silence. 

2. Quickly put the right palm in the left 
palm crosswise in front of you. 

3. Turn the hands over so the left hand 
will be uppermost. As you make the 
turn separate the hands. 

4. Now turn both hands out in front of 
you with the palms down and move the 
right hand to the right and the left 
hand to the left — quiet. 

30 



handbook of the sign language 

Behind — 

1. Hold the left hand with the fingers 
closed and thumb sticking up before 
you. 

2. Suddenly put the right hand with the 
thumb sticking up behind the left 
thumb. 

Behind — (one's hack.) 

1. Throw one hand behind you. 

Behind Time — 

1. Hold your right hand near your side 
with the palm turned inward. 

2. Move the hand back and forward two 
or three times. 

Below— 

l.Hold the left hand before you with the 
palm turned down. 

2. Put your right hand with the thumb 
sticking up under the left palm. 

3. Move the right hand in a little circle 
under the palm. 

(Note. — If under house, table, box, 
chair, paper, etc. add point toward the 
object or make the sign for the object). 

Bench — 

1. Support the left forearm with the right 
hand near the wrist. 

2. Move the right hand to near the left 
elbow and support. 

3. Put both hands, with the palms togeth- 
er in front of you. 

4. Move the right hand to the right and 
the left hand to the left. 

31 



handbook of the sign language 

Beneath — 
1. See below and under. 

Berry — 

1. Put the tip of your index finger on the 
middle joint of your thumb. 

2. Put the thumb to the mouth. 

3. Smack your lips as if tasting. 

4. Go through motion of picking berries 
and putting to the lips. 

Live picture conservation between deaf 
friends on meeting. It is faster than short- 
hand. 







H-rf 




1. I am glad to see you. 

2. So am I glad to see you. 




1. Are you well % 

2. Yes, I am well. 



32 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 




1. Where have you been? 

2. I have been at home. 

Beside — 

1. Pass the palm of one hand down along 
your side. 

2. Point the index finger down by the 
same side. 

Besides — 

1. See sign for Another. 

Between — 

1. Hold your left hand with the thumb 
and index finger extended. 

2. Put the soft part of the right hand be- 
tween the thumb and index finger of 
the left hand. 

3. Move the hand left and right without 
taking it off of ihe left hand. 

Beyond — 

1. Put the fingers of the right hand on 
the back of the left hand held before 
you. 

2. Move the right hand outward and for- 
ward. 

Bible — 

1. Touch the palm of the left hand with 
the middle finger of the right hand. 

33 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

2. Touch the palm of the right hand with 
the middle finger of the left hand. 

3. Put the palms together. 

4. Open the palms as you do in opening a 
book. 

Bid — (a command.) 

1. Put the index finger to the lips. 

2. Move it outward in a semi-circle man- 
ner toward the object. 

3. Have a stern look. 

Bid — (as an offer.) 

1. Hold one palm up and move it for- 
ward. 

2. Let the hand drop. 

Big — 

1. With the fingers bent in a little put 
the palms together. 

2. Move them apart in a large stretch. 

Bird — 

1. Put the back of your hand to your 
mouth. 

2. Move the index finger up and down 
from the thumb as a bird does in open- 
ing its mouth. 

3. Spread out your arms, right to the 
right, left to the left. 

4. Flap the hands and arms as a bird does 
its wings. 

Bite — 

1. Put the side of your index finger in the 
mouth and bite. 

34 



handbook of the sign language 

Bitter — 

1. Put the index finger to the lips. 

2. Scrough your lips and move the hand 
quickly away. 

3. Frown. Or 

1. Jab the index finger toward the mouth. 

2. Scrough the lips and frown. 

Black — 

1. Pass the tip of the index finger along 
the eye brow. (Eye brows are usually 
black). 

Blind — 

1. Put the points of the index and middle 
fingers over the closed eyes. 

Blow — (wind.) 
1. Blow out breath. 

(To strike) — Strike with the fist of one 
hand in the palm of the other hand. 

Blue — 

1. With the thumb resting in the palm 
of one hand, hold the hand before you. 

2. Move the hand in a twisting and round 
about way before you. 

Boast oe Beag — 

1. Close the fingers partly in the palm of 
the right hand. 

2. With the sticking up thumb of the 
hand strike against the breast two or 
three times. Have a proud expression. 

Boat — 

1. Make a trough by putting the little fin- 
gers and soft parts of the hands to- 
gether. 

35 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

2. Move the trough thusly made forward 
in an up and down or wavy way. 
(For ship) — Stick up three fingers. 
(For steam boats) — Put the right hand 
to the left elbow and revolve the hand. 

Book — 

1. Put your palms together. 

2. Open the palms as you do a book. 

Borrow — 

1. Extend the index and middle fingers of 
both hands. 

2. Put the right hand on top of the left 
hand. 

3. Move the right hand up and down two 
times. 

Brass— 

1. Put the index finger lengthwise under 
your nose. 

2. Twist the hand around one or two 
times. 

3. Smell the finger and move it down- 
ward. Frown. 

"Rrave — 

1. Put both clinched fists to 
3^our breast. 

i 2. Move them out forward 
in a bold-defiant way. 

""'" T ... 
Bread — 

1. Hold the left palm facing you. 

2. Use your right hand as a knife to cut 
bread. 

36 




HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

3. Draw the right hand along the back of 
the left hand, letting the little finger of 
the right hand touch the back of the 
left hand. (See Bread in Lord's 
Prayer). 

Brother — 

1. Put the right hand to the forehead. 

2. Strike the index fingers together 
lengthwise. 

Brown — 

1. Draw the index finger over your eye- 
brow. 

2. Put the palm of one hand to the shirt 
front. 

3. Draw the hand out, meanwhile close 
the fingers around your thumb. 

4. Mix the fingers of both hands in a 
round about way. 

Build — 

1. Put the palm of the right hand on the 
back of the left hand. 

2. (Change) — Put the palm of the left 
hand on the back of the right hand. 

3. Repeat the movements and as you do 
so let the hands rise upward above the 
head. 

Burn — 

1. Go through the motion of lighting a 
match. 

2. Hold the lighted match under the left 
hand as if setting something on fire. 

3. Wiggle the fingers of both hands up- 
ward. 

37 



Handbook of the sign language 

Buy— 

1. Strike the back of your right hand in 
the palm of your left hand. 

2. Move the right hand out forward, and 
let some imaginary thing fall out of the 
hand. 

3. Make motion of taking something with 
the right hand. 

C. 
Cabbage — 

1. Strike the sides of your head with the 
ball of your hands simultaneously. 

Cake — 

1. Make motion of beating egg or batter- 
ing with a spoon. 

2. Make a small circular motion with the 
index fingers in front of you. 

3. Make one-quarter cut, as in Pie. 

4. Sign eat. Pleasant look. 
Calf — 

1. See cow — Indicate height by moving 
the palm so high from the ground. 
Can — 

1. Hold the clinched fists before you. 

2. Move them up and down in a firm jolt- 
ing manner to a stationary point near 
the waist. 

Candy — 

1. Pass the index finger of one hand in a 
twisting manner from the far corner 
of your lips to the other corner and 
beyond. 

2. Smack your lips as if pleased with the 
taste. 

38 



handbook of the sign language 

Canada — 

1. Take hold of your coat lapel and pull 
it down two or three times. 

Cap— 

1. Put the index finger of the right hand 
to your right temple. 

2. Move the finger in a semi-circle around 
to your left temple. 

3. Make motion of taking hold of a cap 
brim in front of your forehead. 

Careless — 

1. Hold the right hand with the index and 
middle fingers extended and parted. 

2. Move the hand right and left before 
your eyes. 

Catholic — 
1. Make a cross in the air with the index 
finger in front of your forehead. 

Caepenter — 

1. Imagine you hold a carpenter's jack 
plane in your hands. 

2. Push the hands to the right as you do 
in shaving a board. 

3. Put the palms to the breast and move 
them down simultaneously to the waist. 

Carry — 

1. Hold both hands near your breast with 
the palms turned up. 

2. Move the hands forward and a little to 
one side. 

Cat— 
1. With the index fingers and thumbs of 
both hands extended, put them to your 
mouth. 

39 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

2. Let the tips of the index fingers and 
thumbs touch over the middle of the 
lips. 

3. Draw the right hand to the right and 
the left hand to the left simultaneously. 

4. Stroke the back of the left hand with 
the right hand palm. 

Challenge — 

1. Close the fingers in the hands, with the 
thumbs sticking up. 

2. Hold the thumbs near each other. 

3. Raise the hands a little and let them 
drop in a sudden thump to a stationary- 
position a little further outward. 

4. Have a bold expression. 

Change — 

1. Imagine you hold something in both 
hands held out in front of you. 

2. Change places of the hands. Left hand 
going in the place of the right and vice 
versa. Or 

You can use the index fingers and 
change places. 

To Change the Mind — 

1. Touch the forehead with the tip of the 
index finger. 

2. Sign the change. 

Chaeity — 

1. Touch over the heart with the index 
finger of the right hand. 

40 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

2. Stroke on some imaginary object in 
front of you. Use the same hand. 
Also 

1. Pull downward under your left coat 
sleeve with the right hand — poor. 

2. Move the right hand outward, palm up 
and act as dropping something — give. 

Chase — 

1. Hold the left hand with the thumb 
sticking up before you. 

2. Hold the right hand with the thumb 
sticking up a little behind the left 
hand. 

3. Move the left hand out forward in a 
zigzag manner. 

4. Let the right hand follow as if trying 
to catch up to the left hand. 

China — 

1. Put the index fingers to your temples 
near the corners of the eyes. 

2. Push the skin up the temples with the 
index fingers to make slanting eyes. 

3. Put one index finger back of your 
head and move it downward in a curly 
way for queue. 

Cheat — 

1. Hold the left hand out before you so 
the palm of the hand will face you. 

2. Make a snatch downward from the 
palm of the left hand with the right 
hand fingers. 

41 




handbook of the sign language 

Christ- 

1. Touch the palm of your 
left hand with the mid- 
dle finger of your right 
hand. 

2. Then touch the palm of 
your right hand with 

the middle finger of your left hand. (Show- 
ing print of the nails.) 

Claim — 

1. Point the index finger toward the ob- 
ject if in view. 

2. Slap or bring the palm of the same 
hand against your breast. Earnest ex- 
pression. 

Climb — 

1. Imagine there is a ladder, pole or tree 
near you. 

2. Take hold of it and go through motion 
of climbing. 

Clock — 

1. Touch the back of your left hand with 
the right index finger. 

2. Hang the right hand over the left hand. 

3. Move the right hand left and right in 
a swinging manner, imitating the move- 
ment of a clock's pendulum. 

For watch — Touch on the back of the 
left hand and make motion of taking 
a watch from your vest pocket. 

Coal— 

1. Pass the index finger of one hand along 
the eye-brow — black. 

42 



Handbook of The sign language 

2. Strike on the back of the other hand — 
hard. 

3. Add the sign for burn. 

Coat — 

1. Take hold of your coat lapel and give 
it a pull or two. 

2. Pass the palms of your hands one after 
the other along your arms from should- 
er down. 

Coax — 

1. Touch in an upward manner under the 
left forearm with your right index fin- 
ger — tempt. 

2. Look intently at the object. Evil or 
pleasant expression as the case may be. 
Same sign for tempt. 

Coffee — 

1. Close the fists, both hands. 

2. Put the right fist on top of the left so 
the right hand little finger will be on 
the left thumb and index finger. 

3. Turn the right hand in a grinding and 
circular manner as if grinding coffee. 

Cold — 

1. Hold the closed fists to your sides near 
the breast. 

2. Shiver, meanwhile shake the hands 
and draw them closer to you. 

3. Have a frowning or disagreeable ex- 
pression. 

Comb — 
1. Use the fingers as a comb's teeth and 
draw them downward on the head as 
you do a comb. 

43 



handbook of the sign language 

Company — 

1. With the fingers closed hold the right 
hand in front of you. 

2. Relax one finger after the other, mean- 
ing several. 

3. Bring both hands up to the breast with 
the palms outward. 

4. Move the hands out forward with the 
fingers bent inward a little. 

Compassion — 
1. See Pity. 

Contain — 

1. Hold your left hand before you with 
the palm toward you. 

2. Push the fingers of the right hand 
downward between the thumb and 
palm of the left hand. 

Copper — 
1. See trass. 

Coed — 

1. Place the index fingers on each other 
lengthwise. 

2. Move them around each other. 

3. Draw them apart left and right as far 
as convenient, still moving the fingers 
in a revolving manner. 

Country — 

1. Hold the left forearm in front of you. 

2. Pass the right hand under it in a cir- 
cular movement. 

3. Spread both hands in a waving way 
broadcast before you. 

4-t 



handbook of the sign language 

Cousin — 

1. Strike the index fingers together two 
times. 

2. Show sex male or female. 

Cow — 

1. With the index fingers and thumbs of 
both hands extended put the thumbs to 
your temples. 

2. Move the hands back and forward — for 
horns. 

3. Go through motion of milking a cow. 

Cradle — 

1. Go through motion of pushing an 
imaginary cradle backward and for- 
ward. 

Crazy — 

1. Touch the forehead 
with the index finger. 

2. Move the finger in a cir- 
cle over the forehead 

two or three times. 

Crime — 

1. Make the sign for bad. 

2. Jab the index fingers toward each oth- 
er over the heart — sin. 

Cross — 

1. Hold the right palm before your face 
and draw in the fingers. 

2. Move the hand downward and up, as if 
scratching the face, repeat. 

Crow — 

1. Pass the index finger over the eye-brow 
— Mack. 

45 




HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

2. Pass the hooked index finger over the 
nose. 

3. Flap the arms and hands as in bird. 

Crowd — 

1. Press your closed fingers together and 
move them in a round about way be- 
fore you. Give a close expression. 

Crucify — 

1. Touch the middle of the left palm with 
the right middle finger. 

2. Touch the middle of the right palm 
with the left middle finger. 

3. Spread out the arms sidewardly form- 
ing the cross. 

Cry— 

1. Put the index fingers to your eyes. 

2. Drag them down your cheeks as if 
tracing tears. 

3. Have a crying face. 

Cunning — 

1. Pass the indexfinger under your left 
hand held out before you. 

2. Look shy. 

Curse — 

1. Close the middle, third and little fin- 
gers of the right hand. 

2. Put the thumb and index finger of the 
same hand to the mouth and throw the 
hand down vehemently as throwing 
some thing to the ground. Frown. 

46 



handbook of the sign language 

Cut — 
1. Use your index finger as a knife blade 
and draw it over the place cut. Or 

1. Use your right hand as an ax and your 
left forearm as a tree. 

2. Strike in a cutting down way against 
the left forearm. 

D 

Damp — 

1. Hold both hands with palms upward 
before you. 

2. Cluster the fingers around and part 
them from the thumbs. Repeat twice. 

1. Pass the palms before 
the eyes, letting the 
hands eclipse in front 
of the eyes. 

2. Close the eyes. 

Daughter — 

1. Sign female and baby. 

2. Show height. 

Day— 

1. Point the hand as far out to the right 
as convenient. 

2. Move the hand upward in a semi-circle 
above your head and on to the left, as 
if following the sun. 

Deer — 

1. Have all the fingers of both hands ex- 
tended and wide apart. 

47 




HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

2. Put the thumbs to the temples. 

3. Move the hands backward and forward 
imitating the movement of a deer's 
horns. 

Dedicate — 

1. Hold both hands with the palms turn- 
ed up before you. 

2. Move them upward as if lifting some- 
thing. 

3. Cluster the fingers around the thumbs 
as you make the movement upward. 

4. Bring the hands to a stop and relax 
the fingers as if leaving something. 

5. Have a reverent expression. 

Deny — 

1. Put one or both thumbs 
to your mouth. 

2. Move the hands down- 
ward and outward in a 
vigorous manner. 

3. Have a frowning look. 

Extend and part the index and middle 
fingers of both hands, other fingers 
closed. 

2. Hold the hands near the sides of the 
eyes, and draw in and extend the fin- 
gers two or three times. 

3. Have an evil look. 

Desire — 

1. Move the tip of the right index finger 
upward over your heart. 

2. Extend both hands outwards with 
palms upward. 

48 




HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

3. Bend in the fingers a little. 

4. Draw the hands toward you two or 
three times. 

Diamond — 

1. Hold an imaginary diamond between 
your index finger and thumb. 

2. Turn the hand this way and that. 

3. Look intently at the hand. 

4. Have a pleasant look. 

Die— 

1. Put the palm of one hand on the 
breast. 

2. Give a heavy sigh and close the eyes. 

3. Extend the hand from the breast and 
let it drop downward slowly. 

Dinnee — 

1. Put the elbow of your right arm in the 
palm of your left hand. 

2. Hold the right forearm perpendicular 
— noon. 

3. Point to the mouth and chew, as if eat- 
ing. 

Dirty — 

1. Put the back of either 
hand to your chin. 

2. Wiggle the fingers out- 
ward. 

i 3. Have an unpleasant look. 

Disobey — 

1. Hold the right forearm with the fist 
clinched before you. 

2. Move the forearm upward in a sudden 
jerk above your head. 

49 




HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

Do— 

1. Hold both hands before you with the 
fingers bent down. 

2. Move the hands right then left two or 
three times. 

3. Wiggle the fingers. 

Dog— 

1. Snap the thumb and middle finger. 

2. Pat on the front part of the hip. 

Doll — 

1. Draw the hooked index finger from 
your forehead down over your nose 
a nd chin and sign baby. 

Dooe — 

1. Hold the backs of both hands before 
you so that the index fingers will touch 
each other full length. 

2. Move the right hand backward from 
the left, as opening a door. 

Deaw — 

1. Spread both hands out before you as 
far as you can with the palms up. 

2. Close the fingers in the palms of the 
hands, as if taking hold of something. 

3. Pull the hands toward you. 
(To Draw a Crowd) — 

1. Hold both hands out before you with 
the palms downward. 

2. Draw the hands toward you, mean- 
while close the fingers around the 
thumbs. 

(To draw a picture.) 
1. Use your little finger as a pencil or 
brush. 

50 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

2. Move the little finger over the palm of 
the right hand. 

Dream — 

1. Put the tips of the fingers of one hand 
to your forehead. 

2. Close the eyes. 

3. Move the hand upward, revolving or 
turning it as you do so. 

Dress — 

1. Give your coat lapel or waist front a 
pull or two. 

2. Pass the palms of your hands from 
shoulders down as far as convenient. 

Drive — 

(To drive a horse.) 

1. Imagine you hold reins in your hands. 

2. Check them up and click. 
(To drive away.) 

1. Hold both hands with the palms turn- 
ed outward near your waist. 

2. Push the hands outward as if you 
would do in shooing chickens away. Or 

1. Hold one hand before you with the 
elbow bent and palm outward. 

2. Push the hand outward as if pushing 
some one aside. 

Drown — 

1. Sign water. 

2. Pass your right hand downwards be- 
tween the thumb and fingers of the left 
hand. 

51 




handbook of the sign language 

Drunkard — 

1. Have the thumb and lit- 
tle finger of the right 
hand extended. 

2. Put the thumb to your 
mouth. 

3. Gro through motion of 
drinking. 

Dry— 

1. Draw the hooked index finger from one 
corner of the mouth to the other cor- 
ner. 

Dutch — 

1. Put the tips of the middle finger and 
thumb of one hand together with the 
index finger extended. 

2. Move the hand from and back to your 
cheek two or three times. 

E 

Eagle — 

1. Pass the hooked index finger across the 
nose — beak. 

2. Spread out the arms full length right 
and left. 

3. Flap the arms and hands as in bird. 

4. Bend in the shoulders and bow the 
head. Arms still flapping. 

5. Hold the arms stationary and turn the 
body in a round about way for soaring. 

Ear— 

1. Just touch or slightly pull the ear. 
(Note. — All limbs of the body are in- 
dicated by touching or passing a hand 
over them). 

52 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

Eaen — 

1. Strike the right wrist on the left wrist 
two or three times. 

2. Sign "do." 

3. Make a scoop-in movement with the 
palm of your right hand over and 
along the palm of your left hand. 

Eat — 

1. With the fingers of one hand clustered 
around the thumb. 

2. Put them to your mouth and go 
through motion of chewing and swal- 
lowing. 

Educate — 

1. Cluster the fingers around the thumbs 
of both hands. 

2. Put the backs of the hands to the fore- 
head. 

3. Push the hands forward outward and 
extend the fingers as you do so. 

4. Repeat two or three times. 

Egg — 

1. Use your index and middle fingers as 
a knife or spoon. 

2. Strike on an imaginary egg held be- 
tween the thumb and index finger of 
the left hand. 

3. Go through the motion of pulling or 
breaking an egg shell and dropping the 
contents. 

Egypt — 
1. Press your middle finger against your 
nose — flat nose. 

53 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

2. Make a peak by putting the palms to- 
gether with the finger tips only touch- 
ing. 

3. Move the hands apart in a slanting 
way, right hand to the right, left to 
the left — Pyramid. 

Eithee — 

1. Hold the index finger and thumb of 
the left hand up before you. 

2. Look intently at them, and touch first 
the index finger then the thumb held 
before you with the index finger of the 
right hand. 

(Same for Or J 

Elephant — 

1. Pass the back of your right hand out- 
ward and downward from your nose. 

2. Move the hanging down hand and arm 
from side to side — imitating the el- 
ephant moving its trunk. 

3. Imitate the heavy strutting walk of 
an elephant, using your hands for the 
forefeet. 

Encourage — 

1. Rub the palms of your hands together 
toward the object or imaginary object. 

2. Have an earnest look. 

Endeavor — 

1. Hold the right fist a little behind the 
left fist held out in front of you. 

2. Push both hands simultaneously for- 
ward two or three times. 

54. - 



handbook of the sign language 

End — 

1. Hold the left hand with the little fin- 
ger extended only. 

2. Strike at and just hit the end of the 
little finger of the left hand with the 
tip of the right hand index finger. 
2nd: 

1. Move the index finger of the right hand 
along the index finger of the left hand. 

2. Let the right index finger pass down- 
ward at the end of the left index fin- 
ger. 

England — 

1. Lap the fingers of the right hand over 
the back of the left hand. 

2. Pull the hands toward you. Repeat 
the pull two or three times. 

Evening — 

1. Hold the left forearm before you. 

2. Move the palm of your right hand in 
a downward way over the left forearm. 

Envy — 

1. Put the index finger of 
either hand between 
your teeth and act as 
if biting. 

2. Frown or have an evil 
look. 

Europe — 

1. Put the tips of your fingers on the back 
of the thumb of one hand — forming 
"E." 

2. Move the hand around in a circular 
movement in front of you. 

K5 




handbook of the sign language 

Eveky Day — 

1. Have the fingers closed and thumb 
sticking up. 

2. Put the thumb against the cheek and 
move it out, repeat two or three times. 

Excuse — 

1. Pass the palms of the right hand fin- 
gers over the palms of the left hand fin- 
gers quickly several times. 

Eye— 

1. Put the index finger up to the eye. 

F 
Fae— 

1. Put the palm of the right hand on the 
back of the left hand held before you. 

2. Move the right hand out as far as con- 
venient from the left hand. 

FAEM — 

1. See country. 

Fast — 

1. Hold the left hand up before you with 
the palm facing to the right and the 
fingers sticking up. 

2. Move the right palm in a swift move- 
ment forward and pass the left palm. 

Fat — 

1. Let your right thumb rest against your 
right cheek and the right index finger 
against the left cheek near the chin. 

2. Fill the cheek with breath. 

3. Move the right hand up the cheeks in 
a forced manner. 

56 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

4. Then touch the shoulders with their 
respective hands and move the hands 
outward and backward — Stout. 

5. Extend your chest as you do so. 

Fathek — 

1. Close both hands. 

2. Put the right hand to the forehead 
(male.) 

3. Put the left hand a little above and 
outward from the head. 

4. Move both hands simultaneously to the 
left and as you do so spread out the 
fingers. (For grandfather, move the 
hands and spread out the fingers two 
times.) 

Feel— 

1. Pass the index finger upward over the 

heart. (For emotion.) Or 
Feel around with the fingers. 

Female — 

1. Move the tip of the thumb from near 
the temple, downward along your 
cheek to near the chin. 

Fence — 

1. (Farm fence) — Entwine the fingers 
and move them in a circle before you. 

1. (Paling fence) — Hold the fingers up 
before you and move the hands down- 
ward. Repeat several times. 

Few — 

1. Relax the fingers one after the other 
from the closed fist. 

57 




handbook of the sign language 

Fib— 

1. Pass the index finger of 
either hand from one 
corner of the mouth to the 
other in a brushing way. 

Fiekce — 
1. See cross. Have a stern look. 

Fight — 

1. Strike out the fist one after the other. 
Look cross. 

Find — : 

1. Make motion of picking up something 
with the index finger and thumb. 

2. Have a surprised appearance. 

Fine — 
1. Pass the palm of the right hand over 
the palm of the left hand held before 
you. 




FEAB 
FlEE — 

1. See burn. 
Fish — 

1. Put the right hand fingers against the 
left wrist. 



58 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

2. Wag the left hand as a fish does its 
tail. 

Flat — 

1. Press the palms of both hands down- 
ward. 

2. Move them sideward, right to the right 
and left to the left. 

Flea — 

1. Dampen your index finger with your 
lips. 

2. Swat the finger on some part of the 
arm. 

3. Pretend you have something between 
the thumb and the index finger and 
mash it. 

4. Move the hand out in a jumping man- 
ner, relax the fingers as if something 
got away. 

Floor — 

1. Hold both hands with the palms turn- 
ed down. 

2. Knock them together so the index fin- 
gers will touch each other lengthwise. 

3. Point to the floor. 

Flour — 

1. Hold the left palm up before you. 

2. Move the right palm in a circular 
movement around in the left hand, as 

if grinding or mashing. 

3. Gro through motion of picking up 
something with the right fingers and 
thumb from the left hand palm. 

4. Mash between the fingers and thumb as 
if testing the fineness. 

59 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 



FLO WEE — 

1. Cluster the fingers around the thumb 
of one hand. 

2. Put the hand to the nose and smell as 
you do a flower. (Spell variety.) 

Fly— 
1. (Housefly)— Make motion of swiping 

in a fly with the right hand on the left 

forearm. 
1. (To fly)— Extend the arms right and 

left and flap them as a bird does its 

wings. 

Fond — 

1. Hook the left and right index fingers 
together. Repeat. 

Fool — 

1. With the thumb and little finger ex- 
tended, pass the thumb before your 
forehead two or three times. Or once 
vigorously. 

2. Look cross. 

Foot — 

1. Push the right hand across the palm 
of your left hand. 

2. Squeeze the left fingers over the right 
hand to prevent its going across the 
left palm. 

3. Point to the foot. 

Fob— 

1. Put the index finger to the forehead 
and quickly point it outward and for- 
ward. Or 
1. Put the fingers of the right hand on 
the forehead and move the hand up- 
ward above your head — (because.) 

60 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 



Forget — 

1. Draw the fingers of your right hand 
from near the left temple along your 
forehead to the right temple. 

Forgive — 

1. Pass the palms of the fingers of the 
right hand over the palms of the left 
hand then pass the fingers of the left 
hand over the palm of the right hand. 

France — 

1. Put the thumb on the index finger of 
either hand, all other fingers extended. 

2. Move the hand to one side in a sudden 
movement. 

Freeze — 

1. Hold both hands before you with the 
palms turned down and the fingers ex- 
tended. 

2. Bend the fingers inward and down- 
ward in a quick movement. 

3. Sign cold. Frown. 

Fresh — 

1. Strike upward with the back of your 
right hand in the palm of your left 
hand. 

Friend — 
1. See fond. 

(For lady friend, add female, for 
gentleman friend, add male.) 

Friday — 

1. With the thumb resting on the index 
finger, other fingers extended, move 
the hand in a round about way in front 
of you. 

61 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 
FORM- — 

1. Hold your left index finger up before 
you. 

2. Put the knuckle of the hooked right 
index finger against it. 

3. Draw the right hand toward you. 

Fry — 

1. Use your left hand as a frying pan. 

2. Put the right hand in the left palm, 
turn the right hand over a few times 
as you, turn fish or meat over in a fry- 
ing pan. 

Future — 

1. Hold your right hand near your sides 
with the fingers pointing outward. 

2. Move the hand straight forward as far 
as convenient. 

g 

Gather — 

1. Extend your right hand with the palms 
turned down. 

2. Move the fingers around the thumb, as 
if taking hold of something. 

3. Draw the hand toward you and put it 
between the left forearm held in front 
of you and your breast. 

4. Repeat the movents two or three times. 

Gas — 

1. Pass the index and middle fingers of 
your right hand up between the index 
and middle fingers of your left hand. 

2. Smell the right fingers. 

3. Show unpleasant smell. Turn the 
hand to one side. 

62 



handbook of the sign language 

Gate — 

1. See door and fence. 

Gentle — 

1. Put the index finger of the left hand 
across your lips. 

2. Move the hand in a draging manner 
slowly downward. 

3. Pass the hand under the palm of the 
other hand held near your breast. 

Gentleman — 

1. Put the fist to the forehead — (male). 

2. Move the hand down to the breast — 
simultaneously extend the fingers. 

3. Touch the breast with your thumb tip. 

4. Move the hand out forward. 

Get — 

1. Hold both hands in front of you with 
the palms facing each other and fin- 
gers spread out. 

2. Close the fingers and draw the hand to- 
ward you. 

Geemant — 

1. Cross the hands over your wrists. 

2. Move the hands forward and back 
without moving the hands from the 
wrists. 

Ghost — 

1. Put the flesh parts between the thumbs 
and index fingers nearly together. 

2. Draw the hands apart near the mouth. 

3. Breathe upon the hands and draw them 
apart, closing the fingers around the 
thumbs as you do so. 

63 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 
GlEL— 

1. Pass the tip of the thumb from near 
the temple along the cheek to the chin 

— female. 

2. Show height, by moving the hand up 
from the ground or floor. 

Give — 

1. Close the fingers around the thumb, 
either hand. 

2. Move the hand forward as far as con- 
venient. 

3. Eelax the fingers and drop the hand 
as giving something. 

(Usually move the hand toward the ob- 
ject given to, if present). 

Glad — 

1. Pat the right hand over 
the heart. Have a pleasant 
expression. 

Globe — 

1. Pass the palm of the right hand over 
and around the closed fist of the left 
hand held in front of you. 

Glory — 

1. Hold both hands, with palms down, as 
far as possible out sidewardly. 

2. Draw the hands toward you, mean- 
while wiggle the fingers and move the 
hands up and down. 

3. Turn the head and close the eyes as if 
to screen the eyes. 

64 




handbook of the sign language 

Goat — 

1. Make motion of stroking a long goatee 
with the right hand. 

2. Touch the forehead with the index and 
middle fingers. 

3. Throw the hand backward over your 
head. 

4. Butt against the palm of the left hand 
with your right fist. 

Go— 

1. Hold the extended index fingers point- 
ing direct at each other, in front of 
you. 

2. Move the fingers forward revolving 
one over the other as you make the 
movement. 

For went, use the past-tense. 

God — 

1. Point the index finger, 
with the tips of the thumb 
and middle finger touch- 
ing each other, heaven- 
ward. 

2. Extend your eyes heaven- 
ward. 

3. Move the hand down before your face 
slowly, spread out the fingers as you 
do so. 

4. Bow the head reverently. 

Gold — 

1. Catch hold of the lower end of the ear 
with the index finger and thumb of one 
hand. 




65 




HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

2. Extend the thumb and little finger of 
same hand other fingers resting in the 
palm, move the hand out forward. 

GOOD— 

1. Put the fingers of one 
hand to the lips. 

2. Move the hand outward, 
as if kissing the hand. 

Gospel — 

1. Make the sign of the Bible — see Bible. 
Or the sign of Jesus. 

2. Cluster the fingers around the thumbs, 
both hands. 

3. Put the backs of the hands to the fore- 
head. 

4. Move them out forward and as you do 
so relax the fingers from the thumb — 
(Bible teaching). 

5. Repeat the movements two or three 
times. 

Governor — 

1. Move the right index finger in a circle 

near your right temple. 
1. Put the tip of the index finger against 
the temple. 
Graceful — 

1. See beautiful. 

Grass — 

1. With the index finger of the right hand 
extended and thumb resting on the 
middle finger, twist the hand in a 
round about way in front of you — 
green. 

66 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 




The De l'Epee Monument at Versailles, France. 

Erected by France in 1812. De l'Epee is in the 

act of making the sign for God. The first 

sign he invented. 



67 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

2. Close the fingers around the thumb of 
the same hand. 

3. Force the hand upward between the 
fingers and thumb of the left hand, and 
spread out the fingers as they pass up- 
ward. 

Geave — 

1. Make an oblong square with the index 
fingers toward the ground. 

2. Point downward. 

3. Put the hands together so the index 
fingers will touch each other full length 
hold the hands out from you as far as 
you can. 

4. Move the hands toward you, and as 
you do so let them fall apart a little 
forming an oblong mound. 

GrEAZE — 

1. Sign grass and eat. 

Gbeece — 
1. Draw the index finger of the right hand 
straight down from the forehead over 
the nose. Straight nose. 

Geeen — 
1. With the index finger extended and 
thumb resting on the middle finger, 
move the hand in a round about way 
before you. 

Geeedy — 

1. Make the sign of eat. 

2. Act as if cramming the mouth. Extend 
the cheeks. 

68 



handbook of the sign language 

Greenland — 

1. Index finger of right hand extended 
and thumb resting on the middle finger, 
move the hand in a round about man- 
ner. 

2. Sign cold. 

Grieve — 

1. Rub the closed fist over the heart. 

2. Press both fists together in a twisting 
manner. 

3. Have a grieved expression. 

Grind — 

1. Hold the left turned up palm in front 
of you. 

2. Put the right palm in the left palm. 

3. Move the right palm in a crushing and 
circular way around on the left palm. 

Grow — 

1. Close the left fingers around the right 
hand and fingers. 

2. Force the right fingers up through the 
grip of the left fingers. 

3. Show height, by moving the hand, 
palm down, up from the ground to the 
proper height — or from over the palm 
of the other hand. 

H 

Half — 
1. Draw the right index finger across the 
second joint of the left index finger. 

Hand — 

1. Pass the right index finger around the 
left wrist. 

2. Show the hand. 

69 



handbook of the sign language 

Handkerchief — 

1. Wipe before the mouth with the fin- 
gers. 

2. Sign -white, viz.: Put the palm of the 
hand to the shirt front and draw it out- 
ward, close the fingers. 

Happy — 

1. Pat over the heart with the right hand. 

Hard — 

1. Strike on the back of the left fist with 
the right fist. 

Hat — 

1. Make motion of taking hold of your 
hat brim in front of your forehead. 

Haste — 

1. With the index and middle fingers of 
both hands extended and thumbs rest- 
ing on the third fingers, hold the hands 
near your breast. 

2. Move the hands simultaneously for- 
ward in an up and down movements. 

Hate — 

1. Hold the backs of both 
hands near your breast, 
palms facing outward. 

2. Push the hands out for- 
ward. 

3. Have a frowning look and 
avert the head. 

Have — 

1. (To show possession) Put the back of 
your right hand in the palm of the left 
hand held out before you. 

70 




HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

2. Move the hands up to and against your 
breast. 

1. (As an auxiliary) Hold the left hand 
with the palm facing you. 

2. Strike downwards with the right hand 
pass the left hand fingers. 

He— 

1. Put the hand to the forehead. 

2. Move the hand out with the index 
pointing toward the object. 

Head — 

1. Put the fingers of one hand on top of 
the head. 

2. Move the hand down to the neck. 

3. Tap on the side of the head with the 
fingers. 

Heart — 

1. Put the tips of the index fingers at a 
point near the top of the heart. 

2. Move the hands in a semi-circle down- 
ward so the fingers will come together 
at the bottom of your heart. 

3. Pat over the heart. 

Heaven — 

1. Look heavenward. 

2. Raise both hands above your head, let- 
ting the tips of the fingers touch. 

3. Move the hands sideward and down- 
ward until they get to the level of your 
head or shoulders. 

4. Quickly hold the left forearm a little 
above the level of your head in front of 
you, 

71 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

5. Pass the right hand upward under the 
left forearm. 

Heavy — 

1. Hold both hands with the palms turn- 
ed up before you near the waist . 

2. Lift them upward in a difficult move- 
ment. Have a frown. 

3. Let both hands fall back to near the 
waist with a sudden drop. 

Hen — 

1. Put the back of the index finger and 
thumb to the mouth, and move the in- 
dex finger up and down as a hen does 
its mouth when cackling. 

Her — 

1. Pass the thumb along the cheek from 
near the ear to the chin. 

2. Point the index finger toward the ob- 
ject. 

3. Turn the hand over for objective case. 
Push the hand toward her for posses- 
sion. 

Hers — 
1. See her. 

Hell — 

1. Sign dad. Point downward, unpleasant 
look. 

Help — 

1. Put the right palm under the left fore- 
arm. 

2. Left the forearm up. 

72 



handbook of the sign language 

Hide — 

1. With the fingers closed, press the 
thumb against your lips — right hand. 

2. Move the hand downwards and pass it 
under the palm of your left hand. 

High — 

1. Move the right hand as far up above 
the level of your head as you can. 
(If very high point the index finger 
way up.) 

Hill — 

1. Move both hands with the palms facing 
toward and fingers extended and held 
at an angle of about 45 degrees upward, 
then downward and upward again. 

Him — 

1. Make the sign for he and turn the hand 
over for the objective case. 

His— 

1. Make the sign for he and push the 
palm of the hand toward the object for 
possession. 

Hit— 

1. (To hit with the fist) Strike in the 
left palm with the right hand. 
(To hit with an instrument) Pick up 
the imaginary instrument and throw 
toward the object or hit toward it. 
(To hit with a gun shot) Make motion 
of holding a gun pull the trigger, and 
hit in the palm of one hand with the 
point of the index finger of the other 
hand. 

73 



handbook of the sign language 

Hog— 

1. Put the back of the right hand to the 
chin. 

2. Move the fingers of the right hand out- 
ward on the palm of the left hand — 

as a hog rooting. 

3. Show height by moving the palm up 
so high from the ground. 

Holy — 

1. Hold your left hand with the palm fac- 
ing you. 

2. Pass the right hand palm along the 
left hand palm from the wrist across 
the fingers. 

Holland — 

1. Index and middle fingers extended 
and thumb resting on the third finger. 

2. Move the hand from your cheek out- 
ward and back two or three times. 

Home — 

1. Make the sign for eat. 

2. Lean the side of the head in the palm 
of the hand. 

3. Close the eyes as if to sleep. 

Hop— 

1. With the index finger hooked, move 
the middle finger up and down in the 
palm of the other hand. 
Or hop on one foot. 

Hoese — 

1. Put the extended index and middle fin- 
gers of both hands to the side of the 
head near the ears. 

74 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

2. Move the fingers forward and back as 
a horse moves its ears. 
Hour — 

1. Move the index finger of the right hand 
in a circle over the left palm. 
House — 

1. Make a peak by bringing the finger 
points together in front of you. 

2. Move the hands apart in a slanting way 
about eight inches each. 

3. Move the hands down perpendicular 
about a foot or two. 

Hot — 

1. Put the palm of your hand with the 
fingers bent into the mouth. 

2. Breathe hot breath in the hand. 

3. Move the hand quickly from the mouth 
and throw it downward in a jerking 
manner. 

Hug— 

1. Go through motion of hugging some 
imaginary person or thing. 
Humble — 

1. Draw the index finger of one hand 
across your lips. 

2. Pass the hand down and under the 

palm of the other hand held near the 
breast. 

Hungry — 

1. Make the sign for eat. 

2. Scrape the fingers of the hand down- 
ward from your throat to near the 
stomach. 

Hurry — 

1. See sign for haste. 

75 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 
I 

Iceland — 

1. Make the sign for ice or freeze. 

2. Pass the palm of the right hand under 
the left forearm held before you. 

Idea — 

1. Touch the forehead with the tip of the 
little finger. 

2. Move the finger upward in a curly 
manner. 

Identify — 

1. Take a good look at the object. 

2. Tap the forehead two or three times 
with the palm of the fingers. Use the 
right hand. 

Idle — 

1. Have the little fingers extended only. 

2. Strike the hands against the upper 
arm. 

Ignoeant — 

1. Strike the backs of the index and mid- 
dle fingers of one hand against the fore- 
head. 

2. Have a dull look. 

Industrious — 

1. Have the little fingers extended only. 

2. Strike the right wrist over the left 
wrist several times. 

3. Move the hands around as you make 
the strikes. 

Ink — 

1. Pass the tip of the right little finger 
over the eye-brow for black. 

76 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

2. Dip the little finger between the index 
finger and thumb of the left hand. 

3. Go through motion of writing. 

Intend — 

1. Press the tips of the index and middle 
fingers of the right hand in the palm 
of the left hand several times. 

2. Change position of the fingers each 
time you make the press. 

Inquire — 

1. Make the interrogation mark several 
times in the air. 

2. Look intently. 

Invite — 

1. Hold the right hand with the palm up 
out as far as you can get it. 

2. Draw the hand toward you in an invit- 
ing manner. 

Ireland — 

1. Tap on the back of your left hand with 
the index and middle finger of the right 
hand. 

Iron — 

1. Touch the teeth with the index finger 
of the right hand — hard. 

2. Strike in a gliding manner on the 
thumb and index finger of the left hand 
with the right fist. 

Island — 

1. Move the extended little finger only 
around over the left hand. 

Italy — 

1. Make a cross before the forehead with 
the little finger of the right hand. 

77 



handbook of the sign language 

Japan — 

1. Put the index fingers to the temples 
near the eyes. 

2. Push the skin up to make slanting eyes. 

3. Make the letter " J." 

Jealous — 

1. Put the index finger between your 
teeth. 

2. Make out you are biting. 

3. Have an evil expression. 

Jesus Christ — 

1. Touch the centre of the left palm with 
the middle finger of the right hand. 

2. Touch the center of the right palm with 
the middle finger of the left hand. 

3. Spread the arms out right to right, left 
to left — Sign of the cross. 

Jolt — 

1. Hold both hands out in front of you. 

2. Move them in a sudden and quick man- 
ner forward and back again. Let the 
body jolt. 

Joy — 

1. Pat with both hands over the heart or 
on the breast. 

2. Have a glad smiling look. 

Judge — 

1. Put the tip of the index fingers and 
thumbs of each hands together. 

2. Hold the hands before you and move 
them up and down one after the other 
several times. 

78 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN" LANGUAGE 



Jump — 

1. Put the tips of the index and middle 
fingers of the right hand on the side of 
the index finger of the left hand. 

2. Move the right hand out forward in a 
jumping manner, as a bird jumps from 
a fence to the ground. 

Just — 

1. Sign Judge and bring the hands to a 
sudden pause. 

K 

Keep — 

1. Sign borrow. 

Kick — 

1. Go through motion of kicking with the 
foot. Or 

Hold the left palm downward and 
strike in it with the back of your right 
hand in a pushing out manner. 
(Horse or cow kick) Kick the foot 
backward. Can use the fist if wished. 
Kill — 

1. Use your index and middle fingers for 
a knife blade. 

2. Make a stabbing motion along the palm 
of the other hand. 

3. Turn the hand over and let it fall for- 
ward downward. 

Kind — 

1. Hold both hands with the palms turn- 
ed in near your breast. 

2. Move them out forward from you, re- 
volving one over the other as you do so. 

3. Have a pleasant look. 

79 



handbook of the sign language 

Kindle — 
l.See fire. 

King — 

1. Put the thumb on the second joint of 
the middle finger of the right hand. 

2. Put the hand to the left shoulders. 

3. Move the hand in a circular manner 
out before you and down to your right 
side. 

4. Pass the right hand over the left fore- 
arm held before you. Dominion. 

Knit — 

1. Use grandma's knitting needles and go 
through motion of knitting. 

Know — 

1. Touch or tap on the forehead with all 
four fingers of one hand. 

2. Have a knowing look. 

Knock — 

1. Knock on the back of left hand with 
the knuckles of the right hand. 
(To knock down) Strike a blow in the 
palm of the left hand with the right 
fist. Let the left hand fall over. 



Lady — 

1. Draw the thumb from near the temple 
along the cheek to near the chin. 

2. Spread out the fingers of the hand. 

3. Touch the breast with the tip of the 
thumb once or twice. 

80 



handbook of the sign language 

Lake— 

1. Make the sign of water. 

2. Move the extended index finger and 
thumb of one hand in a round about 
way in front of you. 

Lamb — 

1. Use your left forearm as the back of a 
lamb. 

2. Make motion of cutting along it with a 
pair of scissors, using your index and 
middle fingers for the scissors. 

3. Show height by raising your hand up 
from the ground. 

Laugh — 

1. Touch the corners of your mouth with 
the tips of your index fingers and 
laugh. 

Law — 

1. Strike the index finger of the right 
hand in the palm of the left hand. 

Lawyer — 

1. Sign law. 

2. Add — Put the palms to the breast and 
move them downward to the waist 
for yer. 

Lay — 

1. Lean the side of your head in the palm 
of your hand. 

2. Make motion of a bed or a couch, by 
holding the hands near each other with 
the palms turned down and spreading 
them out sidewardly, right hand to the 
right and left hand to the left. 

81 



handbook: op the sign language 



Lay (to put away) — 

1. Imagine you have something in your 
hand. 

2. Move the hand toward the place or 
imaginary place and drop the thing. 

Lead (verb) — 

1. Take hold of the left hand fingers with 
the right hand fingers. 

2. Pull the left hand outward or to the 
right. 




Lead (noun) — 

1. Make the sign for heavy. 

2. Strike under the chin with the back of 
your right or left hand. 

Leaf — 

1. Sign tree. 

2. Hang the right hand over the left hand 
and shake the right hand as a leaf 
shakes in a tree. 

Learn — 

1. Hold both palms before you as an open 
book. 

2. Look intently in them. 

3. Make motion of taking some thing 
from the palm of your left hand with 
the fingers of the right hand. 

82 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

4. Carry the right hand to the forehead 
and relax the fingers as if leaving some- 
thing on or in the forehead. 

Leave — 

1. (To leave an article) — Imagine you 
have something in your hand. 

2. Place it in the place you wish to leave 
it. 

(To leave on a journey.) 

1. Hold both hands near your breast with 
the palms turned in. 

2. Move both hands out and a little down- 
ward and push out the fingers. 

Letter — 

1. Put the palm part of the right thumb 
against your tongue, then press down 
in the palm of the left hand with the 
thumb, as if pressing down a stamp. 

Leg — 

1. Pass your hand downward over the leg. 

Leprosy — 

1. Sign sick. 

2. Sign white, viz. : Put the palm of the 
hand to the shirt front and draw the 
hand out closing the fingers around the 
thumbs. 

3. Make a spluttering movement along 
the back of the left hand with the fin- 
gers of the right hand. 

83 



Handbook of the sign language 




The Gaixatjdet Memorial Statue. 

Erected at Gallaudet College, Washington, D. C, in 

the year, 1889, by the deal people of North America. 

He is in the act of teaching Alice Cogswell 

the manual alphabet. 



S4 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 




Lie— 

1. Pass the right index finger from the 
right corner of the mouth along the lips 
and beyond the left corner in a quick 
movement. 

2. Have expression of sorrow or regret. 
(Fib) — Put the right index finger held 
perpendicular to the right corner of 
your mouth, and brush or push it along 
your lips to and beyond the left corner 
of the mouth. 

Limb — 

1. (Of the body) — Pass the hand along 
the limb. 

(Of a tree) — Sign tree, and pass the 
hand from the imaginary trunk out- 
wardly. 

Liox — 

1. Look fierce. 

2. Draw the bent in fingers up from near 
the chin over the face and head. 

3. Quickly move both hands with palms 
outward in front of you and use your 
fingers as claws. 

Log— 

1. Sign wood, and move the right hand 
to the right and left hand left, having 
the fingers bent downward. 

85 



handbook of the sign language 

Lonesome — 

1. Move the index finger in a round about 
way in front of you. 

2. Have a forlorn look. 

Long — 

1. Put the right index finger to the left 
index finger. 

2. Draw the right index finger up the left 
arm to the shoulder and beyond if you 
can. 

(Along a road) — Move your index finger 
in a zigzag way forward. 

Look — 

1. Put the index and middle fingers to the 
eyes. 

2. Move the fingers in the direction of the 
object. 

3. Have an earnest expression. 

LoOKING-GrLASS — 

1. Hold the palm of one hand up before 
you. 

2. Look in it, moving the head this way 
and that. 

3. Have a pleasant expression. 

Loose — 

1. Let the hands roll one over the other 
downward. 

Love — 

1. Put the left hand over the heart and 
the right hand over the left. 

2. Give a firm pressure over the heart 
with the hands. 

3. Have a pleasant expression. 

86 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

Low — 

1. Move the hand up and down from the 
ground to the proper height. 

M 
Mad — 

1. Draw the bent in fingers of the left 
hand down from the forehead to the 
chin. 

2. Have an ugly or angry look. 

Make — 

1. Strike one fist on the other, turning 
the striking fist this way and that as 
you strike several times. 

Male — 

1. Put the hand to the forehead and act 
as if catching hold of a hat brim. 

Man— 

1. Make the sign of male. 

2. Hold the hand out to or above the level 
of your head. 

Many — 

1. Close and relax the fingers of one or 
both hands several times. 
Mark— 

1. Draw the index finger over the place 
or imaginary place where the mark 
ought to be. 

Maery — 

1. Put the palm of the right hand in the 
palm of the left hand. 

2. Hold tight. Pleasant look. 

87 



handbook of the sign language 

Mash— 

1. Press the balls of the hands firmly to- 
gether, move the upper hand around a 
little. 

May— 

1. (Denoting doubt) — Hold both hands 
with palms up before you. 

2. Move the hands up and down alternate- 

ly. 

3. Same for perhaps. 

May— 

1. (Denoting consent) — Hold both hands 
before you with palms up. 

2. Push the hands outward and upward. 

Me— 

1. Touch the breast with the index finger 
and let the hand fall in front of you 
with the palm up. 

Meal— 

1. See flour. 

Meat— 

1. Catch hold of the fleshy part between 
the index finger and thumb of the left 
hand with the index finger and thumb 
of the right hand. 

2. Move the hands up and down in a 
shaking manner. 

Medicine — 

1. Rub the tip of the middle finger of 
your right hand in the palm of your 
left hand. 

88 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

2. Go through motion of taking some- 
thing from the left palm and putting 
it to your mouth to taste. 

3. Have expression. 

Meditate — 

1. Rub the index finger in a small circle 
on the forehead. 

2. Rest the hand on the forehead a 
moment and rub again. 

3. Have a thoughtful expression. 
Mend — ■ 

1. Sign. make. Or go through the motion 
of plying a needle. 

2. Show the place. 

(Also go through motion of sticking on 
a piece of court plaster.) 

Merchant — 

1. Pat the back of the right hand in the 
palm of the left hand — money. 

2. Move the right hand out forward and 
make motion of dropping something — 
buy. 

3. Let the tips of the index fingers and 
thumbs come together and hold the 
hands near the breast. 

4. Move the hands outward and back two 
times — sell. 

5. Put the palms to the breast and move 
the hands downward — for ant or er as 
in lawyer. 

Methodist — 

1. Hold the palms facing each other. 

2. Move them up then down. 

3. Clap the hands together as if in great 

ecstasy. 

89 



handbook of the sign language 

Mexico — 

1. With the middle finger lapped over the 
thumb, and index finger extended, 
move the hand in a round about move- 
ment, meanwhile draw in and extend 
the index finger. 

Mild — 

1. Let the little finger of the right hand 
rest on the fleshy part between the 
thumb and index finger of the left hand. 

2. In this position move the right hand 
from side to side two or three times. 

Milk — 

1. Go through motion of milking a cow, 
and drinking from a glass. 

Mine — 

1. Slap the palm of the hand against your 
breast. 

2. Show positive expression. 

Mind (noun) — 

1. Tap on the forehead with the index 
finger. 

Mind (verb) — 
1. See attend. 

Minute — 

1. Have the tip of the right thumb in the 
palm of your left hand. 

2. Move the extended index finger for- 
ward in a quick movement a little. 

90 



handbook of the sign language 

Mock — 

1. With the little fingers and thumbs of 
both hands extended, move them for- 
ward two or three times toward the ob- 
ject. 

2. Have a derisive look. 

Modify — 

1. See change. 

Monday — 

1. Make the letter "M" and move it 
around in front of you. 

Money — 

1. Make a circle with the index finger of 
the right hand in the palm of the left 
hand. 

Monkey — 

1. Scratch upward on both sides. 

2. Fill your cheeks with air. 

3. Move the body and head from side to 
side. 

4. Look silly. 

Moon — 

1. Hold the right hand with the palm fac- 
ing outward and the fingers partly 
bent forward. 

2. Put the hand to the right temple. 

3. Make a circle in the air toward the 
sky. Spread out the fingers and draw 
the hand toward you. Look upward. 

Mokning — 

1. With the palm of the right hand turn- 
ed up, move it up and down under the 
left hand held before you. 

91 



handbook of the sign language 

More — 

1. Hold your left turned up palm before 
you. 

2. Put the tips of the right hand fingers 
against the left palm. 

3. Move the right hand up about six 
inches. (For much, move the hand up 
higher and higher.) 

Moses — 

1. Put both hands to the side of your 
temples. 

2. Draw the hands out right and left, and 
as you do so let the index finger and 
thumb of each hand come together. 

Mothee — 

1. Make the sign for female. 

2. Move both hands fingers closed to the 
left and upward. 

3. Spread out the fingers as you make the 
movement upward. 

Mountain — 

1. Strike on the back of your left fist with 
your right fist. 

2. Move both hands with the fingers ex- 
tended upward and almost perpendi- 
cular. 

3. Look upward with awe. 

Mouth — 

1. Pass the index finger from corner to 
corner and around the mouth. 

Much — 

1. See more, but move the hand further 
up and in a more vigorous way. 

92 



Handbook of the sigjst language 

Muddy — 

1. See damp. Turn the fingers downward 
and move them up and down a few 
times. 

2. Have an unpleasant look. 

Mule— 

1. Put both hands with the fingers ex- 
tended to the side of your head. 

2. Move the hands forward and back as 
a mule moves its ears. 

N 
Nail (verb) — 

1. Imagine you hold a nail between the 
thumb and index finger of the left 
hand. 

2. Imagine you hold a hammer in your 
right hand. 

3. Strike with the hammer on the nail 
held in the left hand. 

(Noun) — Show size of nail by moving 
the right index finger up and down to 
the proper length,, on the left index 
finger. Strike with the hammer. 

Need — 

1. Hook the index finger of either hand. 

2. Have the finger point downward. 

3. Move the hand up and down before 
you. 

Needle — 

Go through the motion of threading a 
needle. Make size of needle on index 
finger. 

93 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 



Neglect — 

1. Cluster the fingers of both hands 
around the thumbs. 

2. Hold the hands near your breast. 

3. Move them out in an up and down 
movement and relax the fingers as if 
dropping something. Repeat. 

Neithek — 

1. Hold up before you the index and mid- 
dle fingers of the left hand. 

2. Touch on the tips of the fingers held 
before you with the index finger of the 
right one time each. 

3. Move the right hand to the right, in a 
swift movement. Shake the head. 

Nephew — 

1. Make the sign for male. 

2. Hold the index and middle fingers of 
the right hand near the ear, and move 
them forward and back. 

Next: — 

1. Put the fingers of your right hand 
against the inside of your left thumb. 

2. Move the right fingers over and against 
the left index finger. 

New — 

1. See fresh. 




handbook of the sign language 

Nice — 

1. Pass the right palm over the left palm 
from wrist across the fingers. 

Niece — 

1. Make sign of female. 

2. Place the right index and middle fin- 
gers of the right hand near the ear 
with the fingers hanging downward. 

3. Move the fingers forward and back a 
little twice. 

Night — 

1. Pass the palms of your hands close by 
the face. 

2. Let the hands eclipse before your eyes. 

3. Close the eyes — (See dark.) 

Noah — 

1. Make the signs of man and boat. Imita- 
tion of the Ark. 

Nod — 

1. Nod the head. Or hold your closed 
fist near your shoulder ; bob it forward. 

None — 

1. Put the tips of the thumbs and index 
fingers both hands together. 

2. Put both hands to the mouth. 

3. Blow on them and as you do so move 
the hands outward and separate the fin- 
gers from the thumbs. 

Nonsense — 
1. See foolish. 

Noon — 

1. Place the elbow of the right arm in the 
palm of the left hand. 

95 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 



2. Hold the right forearm up perpendic- 
ular. 

3. Look upward. 

Nor — 

1. See neither. 



Not- 
1. 



Hold the right hand out in front of 
you with the palm turned down. 
Give the hand a swift movement to the 
right, (some would put the thumb to 
the mouth and move the hand down- 
ward, but that means deny.) 



Obey — 



O 

1. Put the fingers of both 
hands to the forehead. 

2. Move the hands forward 
and downward. 

3. Bow the head in a sub- 
missive way. 

Ocean — 

1. Sign salt and water. 

2. Place the tips of the index finger and 
thumb of each hand together. 

3. Move the hands in a waving and round 
about way in front of you. 




Of- 



Hold the index finger of either hand 
out in front of you. 
Move the index finger in a curved and 
downward and outward way. Or just 
spell "of." 



96 



handbook of the sign language 

Off — 

1. Put the right palm on the back of the 
left hand and let it fall off. 

Oh— 

1. Hold the hands up near the sides of 
your head palms turned out. 

2. Have a surprised or distressed expres- 
sion as the case may be. 

Old— 

1. Hold both hands with the fingers closed 
under your chin. 

2. Move them downward in a shaky man- 
ner. 

(If old person tend in the shoulders.) 
On— 

1. Rub the fingers of the right hand on 

the back of the left hand. Or just 

place the palm of the fingers on the 

back of the other hand. 
Onion — 

1. Rub the knuckle of the index finger of 
the right hand in the eye. 

2. Smell the hand and turn the nose away. 

3. Have a disagreeable look. 
Open — 

1. Place the hands together so the index 
fingers will touch each other full 
length. 

2. Move the hands apart. See door. 
Oe— 

1. Hold the thumb and index finger of 
the left hand in front of you. 

2. Touch alternately the thumb and the 
left index finger with the right index 
finger. 

97 



handbook of the sign language 

Ordeb — 

1. See tell. 

(For a tvritten order) — Go through 
motion of writing in the hand, and 
give. 

Oue — 

1. Put the palm of the right hand on your 
right breast. 

2. Move the same hand around to your 
left breast. 

Ours — 

1. See our. Add plural. 

OVEE — 

1. Hold your left hand with the back 
turned up before you. 

2. Pass your right hand over the back of 
the left hand. 

Owl— 

1. With the tips of your thumbs and in- 
dex fingers touching put the hands to 
the eyes, and look through the O held 
before you. 

2. Extend the eyes as you look. 

3. Pass the hooked index finger of one 
hand over your nose. 

4. Flap your hands out sideward as a 
bird does its wings. 

Ox— 

1. Sign co iv, and instead of making the 
milking movement, whirl an imaginary 
whip over your head. 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 
P 

Pain — 

1. Jab the index fingers toward each oth- 
er an inch or two apart. See ache. 

Paint — 

1. Move the right hand with all the fin- 
gers spread out up and down the left 
forearm as you do in painting. 

Pair — 

1. Draw the index and middle fingers of 
your right hand downward through the 
index finger and thumb of the left 
hand. 

Paper — 

1. Strike the balls of your hands together, 
and move the hands back and forward 
over each other, as if rattling paper. 

Part— 

1. Put the fists together and move them 
apart. Or 

2. Draw the right hand with the little 
finger touching the left palm across the 
palm of the hand. 

Pass — 

1. Pass one hand with the fingers closed 
along by the other hand held out be- 
fore you. 

Passion — See desire. 

Peace — 

1. Hold the left hand with the palm turn- 
ed up, before you. 

2. Place the right palm on the left palm. 

3. Ee verse the hands and place the left 
palm on the right palm. 

99 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

4. Turn both palms downward and move 
them out in a smooth gliding way. 

5. Have an earnest, pleading expression. 

Peel — 

1. Use the left fist as an apple, potato or 
orange, and the right thumb as a knife 
blade. 

2. Go through motion of peeling an ap- 
ple. 

(To peel off hark or skin) — Pull over 
the place with thumb and index finger 
the usual way. 

Peep — 

1. Hold the index and middle fingers up 
to your eyes and peep through them. 
Pekhaps — 

1. See may. 

PlCTUKE — 

1. Make the letter "C" right hand, strike 
it in the palm of the left hand held 
before you. 
Pie— 

1. Cut one-quarter in the palm of the left 
hand with the right hand. 
Pin— 

1. Feel on your coat lapel. 

2. Stick the index finger in a gliding way 
along the back of the left hand. 

Pity — 

1. Pass the middle finger of the right 
hand up over your heart. 

2. Stroke the hand outward toward the 
object. 

3. Have a kindly expression. 

100 



handbook of the sign language 

Plate — 

1. Pluck under the back of the left hand 
with the middle finger of the right 
hand. 

2. Sign white. 

3. Make a circle around the left hand 
with the right index finger. 

Play— 

1. With the thumbs and little fingers ex- 
tended, shake the hands in a round 
about way in front of you. 

2. Have a cheerful look. 
If idle play — frown. 

Please — 

1. Eub the palm of the right hand in a 
circle on the breast two or three times. 

Plow — 

1. Hold on tightly to the handles of an 
imaginary plow in front of you. 

2. Click or check up your horse and push 
the plow along. 

3. Push your right hand outward and as 
you do so turn it over as furrowing. 

Polite — 

1. Touch your breast with the right palm 
move the hand out and downward, then 
touch the breast with the left hand and 
move it out and downward. Repeat 
the movement. 

Pool — 

1. Sign water. 

2. With your thumb touching the second 
joint of your middle finger move the 
hand in a circle before you. 

101 




HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 
POOK — 

1. Pull under the left fore- 
arm sleeve with your 
right hand, let the sleeve 
slip from the fingers. Pull 
two or three times. 

Potato — 

1. Hold the closed fist of your left hand 
before you. 

2. Strike on the back of the fist with the 
index and middle fingers of the right 
hand. 

Por sweet potato — Add the sign for 
sweet, i. e. Draw the index and middle 
fingers downward over your lips. 
Pound — 

1. Cross the right index over the left in- 
dex finger. 

2. Balance the right finger as if weigh- 
ing. 

3. Hold up the index finger for one — 1 
pound; 3 fingers — 3 pounds, etc. 

Praise — 

1. Clap the hands toward the object. 
Preach — 

1. Make sign of the Bible. 

2. Hold your right hand with the index 
and thumb tips touching up to the level 
of your head. 

3. Move the hand forward and back, 
imitating the gestures of a preacher, 
move your lips meanwhile. 

102 



handbook of the sign language 

Preacher — 

1. Sign preach, and add the er. Put the 
palms on the breast and move them 
downward. 

Presbyterian — 

1. Touch the palm of the left hand with 
the tips of the right index and middle 
fingers — for frequent standing in sing- 
ing and praying. 

President — 

1. Hold the hands with the palms facing 
outward near the temples. 

2. Move the right hand to the right and 
left to the left. 

3. Close the fingers as you do so. 
Pretty — 

1. Take on a pleasant and smiling look. 

2. Move the palm of the right hand 
around your face. 

3. Close the fingers around the thumbs as 
you move the hand around the face. 
See beautiful. 

Promise — 

1. Put your right index finger across your 
lips. 

2. Move the hand above the head a little 
outward. 

3. Spread out the fingers. 

4. Have a solemn look. 
Proud — 

1. Place the point of the right thumb 
against your waist in front. 

2. Move the hand upward to your breast, 
dragging the thumb along. 

3. Have a haughty appearance. 

103 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN" LANGUAGE 



A FEW OF THE AMERICAN SIGNS 




I»— Wt»e. ' U— Doal __ 
i*-- KorsiTe. l»— Mother. 
S-Srtrtan. 



T— CWft or Able. S— In. »—Oau 
U-KJd* U-Soldia-. IT— Deaato 
O-Stait. U- Fun. B-Vtstmta) 



104 



HANDBOOK OP THE SIGN LANGUAGE 



Pull — 

1. Extend both hands outward. 

2. Draw the fingers in as if catching hold 
of something. 

3. Pull the hands toward you. Show re- 
sistance. 

Pumpkin — 

1. Sign yelloiv, large and ball or globe. 
Punish — 

1. Go through motion of catching hold of 
some one's collar. 

2. Strike downward under the left hand 
with the index finger of the right hand. 
(If to 'punish in hell) — Point down- 
ward. 

(If in a jail) — Peep through the cross- 
ed fingers held to your eyes. Show 
sad expression. 

Push — 

1. Push one or both hands outward. 

Put — 

1. See place. 

Q 

QUAEEEL — 

1. Look cross. 

2. Hold the index fingers points direct 
opposite each other. 

3. Move the hands simultaneously back 
and forward as advancing and retreat- 
ing. 

4. Move the lips as if talking, but utter 
no voice. 

105 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 



Quick — 
1. See hurry. 

Quiet — 

1. See peace. 

Quit — 

1. Hold the left palm out before you. 

2. Strike down in the palm with the right 
hand so the little finger of the left hand 
will strike in the palm. 




ASKING A QUESTION 

R 

Raileoad — 

1. Hold the left hand with the index and 
middle fingers extended and turned up. 

2. Move the index and middle fingers of 
the right hand in a gliding way along 
on the back of the left hand index and 
middle fingers extended and back turn- 
ed up. 

Bain — 

1. Hold the hands up above your head a 
little outward with the palms turned 
down. 

2. Let the hands come down slowly mean- 
while wiggle your fingers for rain 
drops. 

Eaise — 

1. Make the sign of grow and keep. 

106 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 



Rat — 

1. Lap the middle finger over the index 
finger, both hands. 

2. Put the fingers so fixed on the sides of 
your nose and move them up and down. 

3. Skin or turn up your nose a little. 
Point to a rat hole if convenient. 

Read — 

1. Hold the palms of both hands before 
you, as you do a book. 

2. Pass your eyes across and back a few 
times as if reading a book. 

Receive — 

1. Hold both hands out in front of you. 
Palms up. 

2. Draw the fingers around the thumbs. 

3. Move the hands to your breast. Same 
for accept. 

Red — 

1. Move the index finger downward 
across your lips. 

Rich — 

1. Hold your left palm in 
front of you. 

2. Pat in the palm with the 
back of the right hand. 

3. Move the right hand up 
as far as convenient. The 
further up, the richer the 

person or thing is. 

Ride — (to ride a horse). 

1. Straddle the left index finger with the 
index and middle fingers of the right 
hand. 

107 




HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

2. Move both hands forward in an up and 

down gait. 

To ride in the cars — Sign railroad. 

To ride in an auto — Sign automobile. 
Ridiculous — 

1. See sign for foolish. 

Ring — 

1. Make a large circle with the index fin- 
ger. 

2. Make motion of putting on a ring. 

3. Make motion of ringing a bell. 

Ripe — 

1. Hold both palms out in front of you. 

2. Draw the fingers around the thumbs 
and relax them two or three times. 

Rise — 

1. Hold both hands out before you with 
the palms turned down. 

2. Rise the hands slowly upward. 
Or for sun-rise. 

1. Hold the left forearm before you. 

2. Slowly rise the right hand with the 
fingers closed up from under and out- 
side of the forearm. 

Or to get up from bed. 

1. Lay the index finger in the palm of the 
left hand. • 

2. Rise it up slowly. 

River — 

1. Lap the middle fingers over the index 
fingers both hands — forming the let- 
ter "R." 

2. Move the hands in an outward zigzag 
manner. 

108 



handbook of the sign language 

Road — 

1. Hold the palms facing each other about 
a foot apart in front of you. 

2. Move the hands simultaneously for- 
ward in a zigzag manner. 

Rock — 

1. Touch the teeth. 

2. Strike on the back of your left fist with 
the right fist. 

3. Sign small or large as the case may be. 

Rope — 

1. Lap the middle fingers over the index 
fingers both hands. 

2. Put the hands together in front of you. 

3. Move the hands right and left mean- 
while twist the hands this way and 
that. 

Rot — 

1. Draw the fingers against the thumbs of 
both hands held before you, relax and 
draw again, and glide the thumbs along 
over the inside of the fingers as if 
crushing something soft. 

2. Smell the fingers of one hand. 

3. Avert the head and move the hand 
quickly away. Frown. 

Russia — 

1. Put the hands to your sides with the 
palms turned downward. 

2. Stand a little akimbo. 

S 
Sad — 

1. Hold both palms before your face. 

2. Move them down to your breast. 

3. Have a sad look. 

109 



handbook of the sign language 

Safe — 

1. Cross the wrists with, the fists closed. 

2. Draw them suddenly apart. 

3. Have a relieved expression. 

Salt — 

1. Strike on the back of your left index 
and middle fingers with the palm of 
your right index and middle fingers. 

2. Put the fingers to the mouth and. taste. 
Show satisfaction. 

Saturday — 

1. Make the letter "S" and move it 
around in front of you. 

Saw — 

1. Hold your left forearm before you. 

2. Use your right hand as a saw blade. 
The teeth of the saw being along the 
little finger. 

3. Move the right hand forward and back- 
ward over the left wrist. 

Save — 

1. Put your right palm under the closed 
left hand. 

2. Grive it a slight lift. 

3. Now put the index and middle fingers 
of the right hand under the left fist and 
draw the hands up near the breast. 

Scaece — 

1. See sign for few. 
Sea — 

1. Make the sign for salt. 

2. Move the turned down palms in a wav- 
ing or up and down way out forward 

from you. 

no 



handbook of the sign language 

Secretary — 

1. Hold an imaginary pencil or pen be- 
tween the index finger and thumb of the 
right hand. 

2. Go through motion of writing across 
the palm of the left hand. 

3. Make the sign for cr, viz.: Put the 
palms to the breast and move them 
downward toward your waist. 

See — 

1. Put the index and middle fingers of 
one hand to your eyes. 

2. Point the fingers outward (toward the 
object if convenient.) 

3. Extend the eyes toward the object. 

Sell — 

1. Put the tips of the index finger and 
thumb together, both hands. 

2. Hold the hands near the breast. 

3. Move them outward and relax the in- 
dex fingers from the thumbs as if drop- 
ping something. 

4. Have a business look. 

Seize — 

1. Grab with both hands simultaneously 
at some imaginary thing in front of 
you. 

2. Hold fast. 

3. Satisfied expression. 

Sharb — 

1. Hold your left index finger up as a 
knife blade. 

2. Draw the soft part of the right thumb 
along the left index finger. 

in 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 



3. Move the thumb quickly away and 
shake it down. 

4. Have a satisfied look. 

She — 

1. Make the female sign and point the in- 
dex finger toward the object. 

Sheep — 
1. See sign for lamb. Denote height. 

Shine — 

1. Hold both hands out before you with 
the palms downward and a little up- 
ward. 

2. Draw the hands toward you wiggling 
the fingers meanwhile. 

3. Avert the eyes as if getting them out 
of bright light. 

Shoe — 

1. Push the fingers and thumb of the 
right hand across the palm of the left 
hand. 

2. Close the left hand fingers and thumb 
around the right hand as you do so. 

3. Hold tight with the left hand. 

4. Point down to the shoe. 

Shoemaker — 

1. Sign shoe. 

2. Add the sign for "er." i. e. Put the 
palms to the breast and move them 
downward. 

Shoot — 

1. Hold an imaginary gun or pistol in 
your hands. 

2. Take aim and pull the trigger. 

112 



handbook of the sign language 

Should — 

1. Place the hooked index finger to the 
mouth. 

2. Throw it downward in an inner curve 
movement. 

3. Have a sort of stern look. 
Sick — 

1. Put all four fingers of your right hand 
to your forehead, and the left hand 
fingers to your stomach. 

2. Lean the head downward on the fin- 
gers. 

3. Draw in the stomach. 

4. Have a drooping look. 

SlLVEB — 

1. Make the sign of white. 

2. Strike the back of the right hand in 
the palm of the left hand — money. 

3. Put the palms of the hands near each 
other and shake them as if rattling sil- 
ver money. 

Sin— 

1. Jab the points of the index fingers at 
each other over the heart. 

2. Have a sad look. 

SlSTEB — 

1. Move the point of the thumb from 
near the ear down the cheek to the 
chin — (female.) 

2. Strike the index fingers together 
lengthwise. 

Sit— 

1. Press the palms downwards near the 
sides of your hips. 

2. Act as if you would sit. 

113 



handbook of the sign language 

Stab — 

1. Point the index fingers one after the 
other heavenward. 

2. Spread out the fingers of one hand and 
draw it toward you, wiggling the fin- 
gers — for brightness. Look upward. 

Slate — 

1. Pass the point of the index finger along 
the eye-brow — black. 

2. Strike on the back of the left fist with 
the hooked index fingers. 

3. Go through motion of writing on 
something in front of you. 

Sleep — 

1. Draw the right palm down before your 
face and as you do so close the fingers 
around the thumb. 

2. Close the eyes. 

3. Breathe easily. 

Small — 

1. With the palms of the hands facing 
each other and the fingers bent in, move 
the hands toward and back from each 
other two times. 

Small-Pox — 

1. Make a boreing touch on various parts 
of the face with the point of the index 
finger. 

2. Have a horrified look. 

114 




handbook of the sign language 

Smart — 

1. Push the index finger of 
the right hand from the 
bridge of the nose up 
across the forehead. 

2. Have an intelligent look. 

Snake — 

1. Put the back of the index and middle 
fingers to the mouth. 

2. Draw the fingers in and extend them 
quickly as a snake does its f anged ton- 
gue. 

3. Move the index finger in a rapid and 
zigzag way forward. 

4. Have a frightened expression. 

Snow — 

Put the palm of the right hand to your 
shirt front. 

2. Draw the hand outward meanwhile 
close the fingers around the thumb — 
white. 

3. Hold the palm up as far as you can in 
front of you. 

4. Let the hands come slowly down in an 
oscilating movement. 

5. Wiggle the fingers as you move the 
hands downward. 

Sock — 

1. Go through motion of knitting. 

2. Point to the foot. 

Soft — 

1. Hold both palms in front of you. 

2. Close the fingers softly toward the 

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HANDBOOK OP THE SIGN LANGUAGE 




thumbs two or three times, as if feel- 
ing on a piece of sponge or soft ball. 

Son — 

1. Make the sign for male. 

2. Put right hand on left forearm. 

3. Move the arm up and down a little for 
baby. Show height. 

Soeky — 

1. Rub the right fist in a 
small circle over the 
heart. 

2. Have a distressed ap- 
pearance. 

Souk — 

1. Put the index finger on the thumb and 
make motion of tasting. 

2. Scrough up the lips and move the hand 
away. 

3. Have an unpleasant look. 

Spade — 

1. Imagine you have a spade in your 
hands. 

2. Put the blade to the ground. 

3. Put your foot on top of the spade blade 
and push down as you do a spade. 
Throw up dirt. 

Spain — 

1. Hook the index fingers of both hands 
in front of you. 

Spend — 

1. Put the back of your right hand in the 
palm of your left hand — money. 

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HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN - LANGUAGE 

2. Pass the right hand out forward from 
the palm of the left hand. 

3. Let the right hand fall forward and 
downward. 

4. Relax the fingers as dropping some 
thing. 

Spider — 

1. Hold both hands near the breast with 
palms turned outward and fingers bent 
in. 

2. Move the hands upwards wiggling the 
fingers as you do so. 

3. Have a frightened look. 

Sponge — 

1. Imagine you hold a piece of sponge in 
your hand. 

2. Press your fingers against the thumb 
softly . 

3. Look under the hand as if to see 
water running through your fingers. 

Stone — 

1. See sign for rock. 

Steaw — 

1. See grass and hay. 

Sfread — 

1. Put the hands so the index fingers will 
touch each other lengthwise in front 
of you. 

2. Move the right hand to the right and 
left hand to the left. 

(To spread disease!) — Cluster the fin- 
gers around the thumbs of both hands. 
2. Move the right hand forward and 
spread out the fingers, follow this with 

117 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

the left hand. Repeat the movement 
two or three times. 

Stay — 

1. Put the right thumb on top of the left 
thumb. 

2. Press down on the thumb in or toward 
the place to stay. Or 

1. Move the palm of one hand downward 
over or toward the place to stay. 

Steai 

1. Grive a shy look around. 

2. Put the right hand under 
the left forearm. 

3. Go through motion of tak- 
ing something from un- 
der the left forearm and 
putting it under your coat 

front. 
4. Look this way and that. 

Stkong — 

1. Move the right hand along the left 
biceps. 

2. Bring both fists out in front of you 
and move them downward in a sudden 
jolt. 

3. Extend the breast and shoulders. 
Sun — 

1. Look heavenward, moving your eyelids 
a little. 

2. Make a circle in the air about the size 
of the sun as you see it. 

3. Spread out the fingers of the hand, wig- 
gle the fingers briskly and draw the 

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HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

hand toward you. Avert the head from 
the brightness. 

Sunday — 

1. Hold both hands with palms turned 
outward up near the sides of your head. 

2. Close your eyes. 

3. Move the lips as if in prayer. 

Supper — 

1. Sign eat and move your right hand 

downward over your left forearm near 

the wrist. 
Sweet — 

1. Move the fingers of one hand down- 
ward over your lips two or three times. 

2. Lick your lips a little with the tongue. 

3. Have a pleasant look. 
Sweetheart — 

1. Pat the right hand under the forearm 
near the elbow. 

2. Look pleased. 

Or (the new sign) — 

1. Put the knuckles of both hands to- 
gether with the thumbs sticking up. 

2. Wiggle or bow the thumbs alternately 
toward each other. Like sweethearts 
do their heads when conversing or 
courting. 

Swell — 

1. Put the palm of the right hand on the 
back of the left hand. 

2. Raise the right hand upward slowly. 
Or 

1. Put the fingers over the part and move 
them upward. 
Also see proud. 

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handbook of the sign language 

Swim — 
1. Go through motion of swimming. 

T 

Table — 

1. See spread, add by touching under the 
elbow then the wrist of the left arm 
with the tips of the index and middle 
fingers of the right hand. 

Take— 

1. Mo ye one hand forward with the palm 
turned down. 

2. Close the fingers over the imaginary 
object to be taken. 

3. Draw the hand toward you. 

4. See carry. 

Taste — 

1. Pick up some imaginary stuff from the 
left palm with the index finger and 
thumb of the right hand. 

2. Put it to the mouth — smack the lips as 
if tasting. 

3. Show expression as the case may be. 

Tea— 

1. Hold your left hand with the tips of 
the thumb and index finger touching 
each other in front of you. 

2. Move the index finger and thumb of the 
right hand around in between the in- 
dex finger and thumb of the left hand. 

Teach — 

1. Close the fingers of both hands around 
the thumbs. 

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HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 



2. Put the backs of the hands to the fore- 
head. 

3. Move the hands out forward as far as 
convenient. 

4. Relax the fingers from the thumbs as 
you move the hands out as if giving 
something out. 

5. Repeat the movement two times. 

Tell— 

1. Put the index finger of the right hand 
to your mouth. 

2. Move the hand out forward and down- 
ward. 

Tempeeate — 

1. Put the soft part of the right hand 
between the index finger and thumb of 
the left hand. 

Move the right hand from side to side. 
Move the head from side to side as you 
move the hand. Have a grave look. 



2. 
3. 



Tempt- 




1. Hold the left forearm in 
front of you. 

2. Touch under the forearm 
in a sticking up manner 
with the point of the right 
index finger several times. 

3. Have an evil look. 

Ten— 

1. See numbers illustrated. See index. 

That — 

1. Hold the left hand with the index fin- 
ger pointing toward the object. 

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handbook: of the sign language 

2. Pass the right index finger along the 
left index finger and toward the object. 

They — 

1. Make the sign of male and female. 

2. Move the hand out before you and re- 
lax or spread out the fingers upward 
showing plural. 

Their — 

1. Same as they. Add push the palm of 
the hand toward the object or objects. 
Showing possession. 

Them< — 

1. Same as they. Add turn the hand over 
and let it fall. Showing objective. 

Think — 

1. Put the index finger of the right hand 
to the forehead. 

2. Rub the finger around in a small circle 
several times. 

3. Show a thoughtful expression. 

This— 

1. Hold your left palm turned up before 
you. 

2. Move the right index finger in a circle 
over the palm. 

3. Bring the finger to a sudden stop, 
pointing at the middle of the palm. 

Thorn — 

1. Stick the point of the right index fin- 
ger against the left hand. 

2. Move the left hand quickly away. Rub 
on the spot the index finger touched it. 

3. Show painful expression. 

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handbook of the sign language 

Theead — 

1. Make motion of threading a needle. 

2. Eevolve one index finger around the 
other and move the hands apart still 
revolving the index fingers. 

Theow — 

1. Go through motion of throwing a rock. 
(To throw from a horse) — 

1. Straddle the index finger and thumb 
over the left index finger. 

2. Move the hands out forward in an up 
and down way as if riding horse back. 

'3. Let the right hand fall or slip off of 
the left hand. 
(To throw in wrestling) — 

1. Go through motion of wrestling. 

2. Force some imaginary thing in your 
grasp downward to the ground or 
floor. 

Theough — 

1. Hold your left hand up before you 
with the fingers parted. 

2. Pass your right hand through the part- 
ed middle and third finger of the left 
hand. 

Thuesday — 
1. Make the letters "Th." 

Tie— 
1. Go through the motion of tieing a knot. 

Time — 
1. Make the letter "t" and move it in a 
circle around the palm of the other 
hand. 

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HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

To— 

1. Hold your left index finger up before 
you. 

2. Move the tip of the right index finger 
toward and against the left index fin- 
ger. 

Toad— 
1. See frog. 

Toe— 

1. Move your thumb up and down and 
point to the foot. 

To-Day— 

1. Hold your upturned palms in front of 
you. 

2. Move them up and down a little. 

3. Point the index finger of the right 
hand to the right (east.) 

4. Move the right hand with the finger 
still pointing in a semi-circle upward 
and over to your left as far as you can 
get it. 

Tomato — 

1. Use your left fist for a tomato. 

2. Feel around it with your right hand 
palm. 

3. Tip the lips with your right index fin- 
ger — for red. 

4. Draw the right index finger two or 
three times across the left fist as if 
cutting slices off of the tomato. 

Tomorrow — 
1. With the fingers closed and thumb up, 
put the side of the thumb against the 
cheek. 

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HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

2. Throw the hand backward over the 
shoulder. 
Tongue — 

1. Touch the tongue with the index finger 
of the right hand. 

Towaed — 
1. See to. 

Towel — 

1. Make a small oblong square in the air 
with your index fingers. 

2. Go through the motion of wiping your 
face with a towel. 

Towee — 

1. See build, and point upward. 
Town — 

1. Hold your hands in the form of a peak 
— i. e. : Let the finger tips of each hand 
touch. 

2. Let the peak point upward. 

3. Move the hands in a round-about 
way. 

4. As you make the movement around let 
the finger tips part and come together 
again several times. 

(The peak indicates the tops of 
houses.) 

Teack — 

1. Use your hands as feet. 

2. Press one palm downward after the 
other two or three times. 

3. Point to the foot. 

(Tracks of animals are expressed in 

various ways.) 

(Bailroad track) — Glide the index and 

125 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

middle fingers of right hand over the 
left index and middle fingers. 
(Wagon track) — Make two circles one 
with the right hand and the other with 
the left hand near your sides and point 
along the road. 

(Automobile track) — Sign auto and 
point along the road, etc., etc. 

Travel — 

1. Sign railroad. 

2. Move the index finger in a round-about 
way in front of you and above your 
head. 

Treat — 

1. See kind. 
Trouble — 

1. Pass the palm of one hand after the 
other before your face. 

2. Have a troubled look. 

Trunk — 

1. See box. 
»True — 

1. Push the entire length of 
one index finger upward 
across your lips. 

2. Have an earnest expres- 
sion. 

3. Strike the hand down on 
the other hand. 

Truth — 

1. Put one index finger to and across the 
lips. 

2. Move the hand upward and outward in 
a positive manner. 

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handbook of the sign language 

Tuesday — 
1. Make the letter "T" and move it 
around in front of you. 

3. Have a serious look. 

4. Strike the hand down on the other 
hand. 

Turkey — 

1. (nation) — Form the crescent "C" and 
put it to your forehead. 

Tuekey — 

1. (Fowl) — Sign hen. 

2. Hang the index finger of one hand 
down from your nose. 

3. Move the finger from side to side. 

U 

Ugly — 

1. Have a pouting face. 

2. Move the hooked index 
fingers of both hands up 
and down alternately 
along the cheeks. 

3. Pass one hooked index 
finger over the nose. 
See awhtvard . 

Umbrella — 

1. Go through motion of opening and 
hoisting an umbrella. 

2. Hold an imaginary umbrella over your 
head. 

Unbecoming — 

1. Make the signs of not and nice. 

Or put the thumb with the fingers ex- 
tended to your breast, move it out and 

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HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

back once or twice and throw the hand 
down and backward — ungentlemanly 
or unladylike. 
Uncle — 

1. Have the index and middle fingers of 
the right hand extended upward. 

2. Move the hand up and down near the 
ear. 

Under — 

1. Hold the left hand with the palm turn- 
ed down in front of you. 

2. Put the right hand with the thumb 
sticking up under the left palm. 

3. Move the right hand in a little circle 
under the left palm. 

(To go under something) — 
Pass the right hand with the thumb 
sticking up from one side beyond the 
other side under the palm of the left 
hand. 
Until — 

1. Put the right index finger between the 
index and middle fingers of the left 
hand. 

2. Move the right hand outward and 
downward. Have the index finger one- 
quarter bent down. 

Unto — 
1. See to. 

Up— 

1. Point upward, or move both hands up- 
ward. 
Upon — 

1. Hold the left hand up in front of you. 

2. Put the right hand upon it. 

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HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN" LANGUAGE 



Us— 

1. Touch your right breast with your 
right index finger. 

2. Move the right index finger around in 
a circular motion from the right breast 
to the left breast. 

3. Turn the right hand over so the back 
of the hand will be downward — to 
denote objective case. 

United States— 

1. Move the right hand from the left 
shoulder in a sweeping manner to the 
right. 

2. As you make the movement make the 
capital letters of U. S. with the fingers. 

USEFUL — 

1. Hold your left forearm before you. 

2. Put your right palm under the left 
forearm and give it a lift — help. 

3. Bring the palms together. 

4. Move the palms forward and backward 
alternately against each other. 

V 

Vain — 

1. Hold both hands with the index and 
middle fingers extended and parted up 
near the side of the head, palms facing 
backward. 

2. Move the index and middle fingers back 
and forward two or three times. 

3. Have a vain or proud expression. 

Vale or Valley — 

1. Hold both hands out sidewardly above 
the level of your head. 

129 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

2. Move the hands down and "inwardly so 
the backs of the hands will meet near 
the level of your waist in front of you, 
as far out as possible. 

Veil — 

1. Place the right hand palm lengthwise 
on the back of the left hand. 

2. Hold the hands up before your eyes. 

3. Draw the hands apart right hand going 
right and left to the left. 

4. Pass the hand around to the back of 
the head. Gro through the motion of 
a woman putting on a veil. 

Very — 

1. Put the tips of the index and middle 
fingers of the right hand against the 
tips of the index and middle fingers of 
the left hand. 

2. Move the hands apart simultaneously. 
Left hand going left and right, to the 
right. 

Vine — 

1. Use your left forearm as a post. 

2. Hold it perpendicular before you. 

3. Move the index finger of the right hand 
up and along the forearm in a spirial 
way. 

Vinegae — 

1. Put the tip of your index finger to your 
lips. 

2. Act as if tasting. 

3. Scrough and smack the lips. 

4. Show disagreeable taste. 

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handbook of the sign language 

Visit — 

1. Hold the index and middle fingers of 
both hands extended and parted. 

2. Put the right fingers to the right eye 
and move them out forward. 

3. Put the left fingers to the left eye and 
move them out forward. Repeat the 
movements two times. 

Vote — 

1. Drop an imaginary ticket with your 
right hand fingers, between the thumb 
and fingers of the left hand. 

Vow — 

1. See promise. 

W 

Wait — 

1. Press your index finger against your 
lips. 

2. Hold both hands out forward with the 
palms up, and the left hand a little 
further out than the right hand. 

3. Wiggle the fingers. 

4. Have a patient look. 
Wake — 

1. Close the eyes. 

2. Put the hands, with the fingers closed 
around the thumbs, to the eyes. 

3. Relax the fingers from the thumbs and 
open the eyes. 

Walk — 

1. Use your hands as feet. 

2. Move the hands one after the other for- 
ward as you move your feet in walking. 

3. Use your feet also. 

131 



handbook of the sign language 

Wall — 

1. Let the palms of the hands face each 
other in front of you about a foot apart. 

2. Move the hands upward to a level 
above your head. 

(For great walls) — Move the hands as 
far apart as convenient. 
(For walls of a room) — Pass your 
hand around with palm outward or to- 
ward the wall. 

Want — 

1. Hold both hands with palms turned up 
out before you. 

2. Draw the hands simultaneously toward 
you. 

3. Bend in the fingers as you draw the 
hands toward you. 

4. Repeat the movement two or three 
times. 

War— 

1. Hold both hands in front of you with 
the palms turned down and the finger 
tips opposite each other. 

2. Move the hands simultaneously to the 
right vigorously wiggling the fingers — 
as guns shooting. 

3. Move back to the left and repeat two 
or three times. 

4. Have a serious appearance. 

Warm — 

1. Breathe a warm breath in the palm of 
one hand. 

2. Have the fingers of the hand half bent 
in. 

132 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

(For warm weather) — Draw the hook- 
ed index finger of the right hand from 
near the left temple across your fore- 
head to the right temple. 

Wash — 

1. Make the sign of water, and go through 
motion of washing the face and hands. 
(To wash clothes) — Gro through motion 
of washing or rubbing on the knuckles, 
or a washboard as an old woman does 
in washing clothes. 

Waste — 

1. Push the back of your right hand for- 
ward over the palm of your left hand, 
then vice versa. 

2. Push the back of the left hand forward 
over the palm of the right hand. 

3. Repeat the movements two times. 

Watch — 

1. See attend. 

2. Make motion of pulling a watch out of 
your vest pocket. Look at the hand 
as if seeing what time it is. 

Watee — 

1. Extend index, middle and third fingers 
upward before you. 

2. Move the hand right and left several 
times. 

( A drink of water) — Make motion of 
drinking from a glass — using the hand 
as a glass. 

133 



handbook of the sign language 

We— 

1. Touch the right breast with the tip of 
your right index finger. 

2. Move the finger in a circular way 
around to the left breast. 

3. Relax fingers forward for plural. 

Weak — 

1. Put the tips of the index and middle 
fingers of the right hand in the palm of 
the left hand. 

2. Press the right hand downward and as 
you do so bend the index and middle 
fingers. 

3. Repeat two times. 

4. Show weak expression. 

Wednesday — 

1. Make the letter "W" and move it 
around in front of you. 

Week — 

1. Hold your left hand with the fingers 
spread and far apart before you, 
(for 5.) 

2. Lay the thumb and index finger of the 
right hand in the left palm, (for 2 more 
making 7.) 

3. Push the hands out forward, letting 
the right hands slip off of the left palm 
a little further out. 

Weak — 

1. Put the wrists of the hands with palms 
up against their respective sides. 

2. In this position move the hands slight- 
ly right and left two or three times. 

3. Bring the palms together and rub the 

134 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

fingers back and forward. Let the 
palms of the fingers touch as you make 
the movement. 

Well — 

1. (Noun) — Make a circle downward in 
front of you. 

2. Make the sign of water, and point 
downward deep. 

Well— 

1. (Adjective) — Sign good. Or 

1. Pass the palm of your right hand over 
your left arm. 

2. Pass the left palm over the right arm. 

3. Bring the fists of both hands down in 
a sudden jolt in front of you. 

Wet— 

1. See damp. 

Whale — 

1. Sign -fish and large. 

2. Pass the index fingers up along the 
sides of your nose and outward as a 
whale spirming. 

(To denote Jonah, add sign of man 
and swallow.) 

What — 

1. Strike on the index finger of the left 

hand with the right index finger. 

2. Move the right hand with the palm 
turned up out in front of you. 

3. Move the hand right and left. 

Or just move your index finger in a 
round-about way in front of you. 

Which — 

1. Hold both hands before you with the 

135 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

fingers closed in the palms and the 
thumbs sticking up. 
2. Move the hands up and down alter- 
nately. Looking at one then the other 
as you do so. 
To show connection — 

1. Hold the left hand with the index fin- 
ger and thumb touching in front of you. 

2. Hook the right index finger between 
the index finger and thumb of the left 
hand. 

Whip — 

1. Make motion of catching hold of some 
imaginary object with the left hand. 

2. Strike downward under the left hand 
with right hand, using the index finger 
as a whip or rod. 

Whiskey — 

1. Put the thumb of one hand with the 
little finger extended to the lips. 

2. Gro through motion of drinking. 

3. Move the head from side to side. 
(Same for drunkard.) 

White — 

1. Put the palm of your right hand to 
your shirt front. 

2. Draw the hand outward closing the fin- 
gers around the thumb as you do so. 
Repeat the movement. 

Who — 

1. Pass the index finger around the face. 

2. Look left and right a little. 

Whom — 

1. Pass the index finger around the face. 

136 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

2. Move the hand out forward and turn 
the palm upward to show objective. 

Whose — 

1. Pass the index finger around the face. 

2. Push the palm of the hand toward the 
object. 

Wicked — 

1. Sign bad. 

2. Jab the index fingers toward and pass 
each other over or near the heart two 
or three times. 

Wife — 

1. Join the hands palm in palm. See fe- 
male sign. 

Win— 
1. See get. Have pleasant look. 

Wine — 

1. Have the index, middle and third fin- 
gers of the hand extended and upward. 

2. Rest the thumb on the little finger. 

3. Rub the fingers in a small circle on the 
cheek. 

Wind — 

1. Hold the palms up opposite each 
other. 

2. Move them simultaneously right and 
left. 

3. Make wind with your mouth. 

4. Turn the palms outward and push 
them forward, still blowing with the 
mouth. 

Window — 

1. Look or point toward a window. 

137 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

2. Go through the motion of hoisting a 
window. 

Wise — 

1. Touch the forehead with the point of 
the index finger. 

2. Hook the finger and move it up and 
down in front of and near the fore- 
head. 

3. Have a grave look. 

Wood — 

1. Make motion of sawing on the left fore- 
arm, with the right hand as a saw. 

World — 

1. Have the thumbs of both hands rest- 
ing on the respective little fingers. 

2. Hold one hand stationary before you. 

3. Move the other hand around, beneath 
and over the hand held stationary. 

Worm— 

1. Hold your left hand with the palm 
turned sideward before you. 

2. Push the right index finger in a crawl- 
ing or zigzag way across the palm of 
the left hand from the wrist on to and 
beyond the fingers. 

Worship— 

1. Hold both hands with the palms turn- 
ed out before you. 

2. Move the hands simultaneously to the 
right then to the left two or three times. 

3. Bow the head and have a respectable 
look. 

Wrist — 

1. Just touch and show your wrist. 

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handbook of the sign language 

Write — 

1. Hold an imaginary pencil or pen be- 
tween the index finger and thumb of 
the right hand. 

2. Go through the motion of writing in 
the palm of the left hand. 



Year — 

1. Hold your left fist stationary in front 
of you. 

2. Touch on top of the left fist with the 
right fist. 

3. Move the right fist around in a circle 
and touch the left fist again in the 
starting place. 

Yell — 

1. Partly close both hands. 

2. Put the hands to the mouth. 

3. Throw them up vehemently above your 
head. 

4. Open your mouth wide as if hollering, 
but use no voice. 

Yellow — 

1. Extend the thumb and little finger of 
one hand. 

2. Move the hand in a round-about and 
twisting manner in front of you. 

Yet — 

1. Extend your thumb and little finger. 

2. Hold the hand near your breast. 

3. Move the hand out forward -a little at 

139 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

a time in a pushing and up and down 
manner. Or 

1. Hold your left palm up before you. 

2. Touch with the tips of the right hand 
fingers, first on the ball of the left palm, 
then about an inch further forward 
and on until you get to the left hand 
finger tips. 

Yes — 

1. Bow the head in an affirmative manner. 

Yesteedat — 

1. With fingers closed and thumb up, put 
the side of the thumb to the cheek. 

2. Move the hand outward. 

Yield — 

1. Touch the breast with the palms of the 
fingers of both hands simultaneously. 

2. Move the hands downward slowly. 

3. Bow the head as you do so. 

4. Have a pleasant or sad look as the case 
may be. 

Yoke — 

1. Place the thumb and fingers around the 
back of your head. 

2. Force the head downward with the 
palm. 

3. Move the head from side to side. 
Yonder — 

1. Throw the back of the hand out to- 
ward the object. . 

2. Point to the object. 

You— 

1. Point the index finger toward the per- 
son or object. 

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handbook of the sign language 

Your — 

1. Point the index finger toward the ob- 
ject, and push the palm of the hand to- 
ward it. 

Yours — 

1. Point the index finger toward the ob- 
jects, and push the palm outward two 
or more objects. 




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HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

LIST OF NUMBEBS. 

One — 

1. Hold the index finger up. 

Two— 
1. Hold the index and middle fingers up. 

Theee — 

1. Hold the index, middle and third fin- 
gers up. 

Four — 

1. Hold the index, middle, third and lit- 
tle fingers up. 

Five — 

1. Hold all four fingers and the thumb up. 

Six— 
1. Place the tips of the thumb and little 
finger together and hold the hand up. 

Seven — 
1. Place the tips of the thumb and third 
finger together and hold the hand up. 

Eight — 

1. Place the tips of the thumb and middle 
finger together and hold the hand up. 

Nine — 

1. Place the tips of the thumb and index 
fingers together and hold the hand up. 
Ten— 
1. Have your thumb sticking up and the 

fingers closed in the palm. 
3. Twist the hand and thumb to the right. 
(If you use your left hand twist to the 
left.) 

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handbook of the sign language 

Eleven — 

1. Sign ten, add sign of one. 

Twelve — 

1. Sign ten, add sign of two. 

(Go on in the same process until you 
get to nineteen.) 

Twenty — 

1. Extend thumb and index finger. 

2. Move the hand right or left according 
to the hand you use. 

Twenty-One — 

1. Sign twenty, add the sign for one. 
(Go on to twenty-nine.) 

Thirty — 

1. Extend thumb, index and middle fin- 
gers. 

2. Move the hand to the right or left ac- 
cording to the hand you use. 

(Go on to forty, fifty, sixty, seventy, 
eighty, ninety and ninety-nine.) 

One-Hundred — 

1. Sign one, add "C" and so fourth. 
Thousand — Make the letter M with the 
fingers and touch with it in the palm of 
the hand. 

Million — 

1. Touch the palm two times with "M." 

Billion — 

1. Touch the palm three times, with the 
"M." 
(And so on for the infinite numbers.) 

143 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 













K 










R 








"W 






GOOD 




BAD 



DOUBLE-HAND ALPHABET. USED IN ENGLAND. 

144 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

The Lord's Prayer 

With First Pose Illustrations: 

To Practice : 

First — Get in Pose (1) as shown in the 
picture, then follow poses 2, 3, etc., as direct- 
ed. Go slow until you remember the whole 
then put on speed. These poses learned 
you need have no trouble in understanding 
how to go through the vocabulary. 



Move the palm of the 
right hand around to the 
left breast, 



Our (1) 

2. Move the hands upward 
simultaneously toward 
the left, 

3. Spread out the fin- 
gers as you make the 
movement upward. 





Father (1) 




3. 



Move the index fingers 
in a circle around the 
face. 

Have an earnest look 
upward. 



Who (1) 



145 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 



Move the index finger 
forward and downward 
in a brisk movement. 





Abt (1) 

Push the fingers of the 
right hand down be- 
tween the thumb and fin- 
gers of the left hand. 



In (1) 

2. Move the hands side- 
ward and downward. 
Eight hand to the right, 
and left hand to the left. 

3. Hold the left forearm in 
front of you above the 
level of your forehead. 

i -d +1 ' • i + i a Heaven (1) 

4. _Pass the right hand up- 
ward and under the left forearm. Look 
upward. 





Glide the right palm 
along the left palm to- 
ward the right. 



Hallowed (1) 



146 



handbook: of the sign language 



Move the hooked index 
finsrer to the left. 





Be (1) 



'2. Extend or relax the fin- 
gers of the hand and 
push the palm upward. 



Thy (1) 



Strike downward with 
the right hand index and 
middle fingers against 
the index and middle fin- 
gers of the left hand. 




Name (1) 




Extend the fingers and 
push the palm upward. 



Thy (1) 



147 




HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

2. Move the right hand in 
a semi-circle to the right 
side. 

3. Hold the left forearm in 
front of you. 

4. Pass the palm of the Kingdom (1) 
right hand over the left 

forearm from right to left. Look upward. 



2. Draw the hands toward 
you. 

3. Revolve the index fin- 
gers one after the other 
over each other. 




Come (1) 



Extend the fingers and 
push the palm upward. 




Thy (1) 




Will (1) 



Let the hands drop slant- 
ingly to the left. (Obey). 



148 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 



Move the hooked index 
finger to the left. 





Be (1) 



Move both hands to the 
left, then to the right, 
wiggle the fingers as you 
do so. 



Done (1) 



2. Kub the right hand 
around on the back of 
the left hand. 




On (1) 




Move the right hand 
around the left hand. 



Eaeth (1) 



149 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 



Move both index fingers 
to the right or left once. 





2. 



As (1) 



Move the little finger 
forward and outward. 



It (1) 



Move the finger for- 
ward and outward. Brisk 
movement. 




Is (1) 




In (1) 



Push right hand fingers 
down between the thumb 
and fingers of the left 
hand. 



150 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 

2. Move the hands side- 
ward and downward. 
Eight hand to the right 
and left hand to the left. 

3. Hold the left forearm in 
front of yon above the 
level of your head. 

4. Pass the right hand up- 
ward and under the left forearm. 




Heaven (1) 




2 Move the hands outward. 

3. Relax the fingers as if 
dropping something. 



Give (1) 



Move the index finger 
around to the left breast. 
Finger pointing out- 
ward. 





This (1) 



Us (1) 

2. Move the right index fin- 
ger in a circle over the 
left palm. 

3. Bring the finger to a sud- 
den stop over the middle 
of the palm. 

151 



HANDBOOK OP THE SIGN LANGUAGE 



2. Move the hand with, the 
index finger extending 
in a circle above the 
head over to the right. 





Day (1) 



Move the hand around 
to the left breast. Palm 
to rest on the breast. 



Our (1) 



2. Give the thumb of the 
hand two ^ short move- 
ments up along the 
cheek. 




Daily (1) 




Draw the right hand 
backward or to the right 
along the back of the 
left hand. 



Bee ad (1) 



152 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 



Move the hand to the 
right, meanwhile close 
the fingers around the 
thumb. 





And (1) 



Pass the palm of the 
right hand along over 
the left hand. "Upward 
look. 



Forgive (1) 



Move the right index 
finger around to the left 
breast. Finger pointing 
outward. 




Us (1) 




2. Pass the palm around to 
and against the left 
breast. 



Our (1) 



153 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 



2. Jab the index fingers to- 
ward each other. 





Tees- 
passes (1) 



Move both hands toward 
the right or left once. 



As (1) 



2. Pass the index finger 
around to the left breast. 




We (1) 




2. Pass the palm of the 
right hand along over 
the palm of the left 
hand. 



Forgive (1) 



154 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 



2. Move the hand up and 
down two times. 




Those (1) 




2. Move the finger in a 
circle around the face. 



Who (1) 



2. Jab the index fingers to- 
ward each other. 




Tees- 
pass (1) 




2. Strike the right fingers 
against the palm of the 
left hand. 



Against (1) 



155 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 



Move the index finger 
around to the left breast. 





Us (1) 



Move the hand to the 
right, meanwhile close 
the fingers around the 
thumb. 



And (1) 



Pull the left hand out 
forward with the fingers 
of the right hand. 




Lead (1) 




Move the index finger 
around to the left breast. 



Us (1) 



156 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 



2. Move the right hand 
downward toward the 
right. 




Into (1) 




Not (1) 



2. Push the right hand fin- 
gers down between the 
thumb and fingers of the 
left hand. 



Touch under the left 
forearm two or three 
times with the index fin- 
ger of the right hand. 




Tempta- 
tion (1) 




2. Move the hands apart, 
right going to the right 
and left to the left. 



But (1) 



157 



3. 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 



Lift the left forearm 
with the light hand. 
Cross the wrists and sud- 
denly throw them apart 
as if breaking fetters. 





Deliver (1) 



2. Move the finger around 
to the left breast. 



Us (1) 



2. Pull the bent right in- 
dex finger from the left 
index finger held before 
you. 





Evil (1) 



From (1) 

2. Move the hand from the 
mouth. 

3. Turn the palm down- 
ward. 

4. Throw the hand down 
and backward in a brisk 
maimer. 



3 58 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 



2. Move the hand upward 
from the forehead. — 
(Because.) 





For (1) 



2. Extend the fingers and 
push the palm upward. 



Thine (1) 



2. Move the finger outward 
from the mouth. 




Is (1) 




2. Shake the finger two 
times forward. 



The (1) 



159 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 



2. Move the right hand in 
a semi-circle to the left 
side. 

3. Hold the left forearm in 
front of you. 

4. Pass the palm of the 
right hand over the left 

forearm, from right to left. Upward look. 




Kingdom (1) 




And (1) 



2. Move the hand to the 
right, close the fingers 
around the thumb as you 
do so. 



2. Shake the finger two or 
three times. 





The (1) 



2. Move both hands down- 
ward in a firm jolting 
maimer. 



Powee (1) 



160 



HANDBOOK OF THE SIGN LANGUAGE 



to the 



2. Move the hand 
right, close the 
around the thumb as you 
do so. 



fingers 





And (1) 



Shake the index finger 
two or three times out- 
ward. 



The (1) 



Draw both hands toward 
you, wiggle the fingers 
as you do so. Look up- 
ward. 




Glory (1) 




2. Push the hand out for- 
ward as far as conven- 
ient. 



Forever (1) 



161 



Handbook of the sign language 



2. Put the palms of the fin- 
gers together. 

3. Hold them in a peak be- 
fore your face, in prayer 
attitude. 



4. Move the hands slowly Amen (1) 

downward to the breast. 
Bow the head reverently as you do so. 








r* 



M N 










y Z Good bad 



DOUBLE-HAND ALPHABET 



1C2